Is Flint Water Now Safe?

Sadly, it depends on who you ask. If you ask Barack Obama who proudly drank the water, the water is fine. I imagine if you ask local politicians, especially now that lower level scapegoats have been charged with crimes, they too will tell you that all things are safe on the waterfront.

If you seek the truth, then the facts dictate that the only way the tap water in Flint can be made safe is by replacing the entire piping network. I have written about this before so forgive me for providing part of this answer via a link to that previous article.

For the Cliffs Notes version, here is the problem. The greatest protection against metals leaching out into water faucets is the calcium scale layer that builds up over the years inside the pipes. This scale prevents water from touching the actual lead or copper pipe. Once the water inside the pipes was allowed to go acidic, that protective layer was softened and even dissolved. It takes years for that layer to reform and harden. During that time water will again come into contact with metals of the pipe and carry them into the tap water of many.