MLGW giving customers water filters in case of lead leaks

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- You may notice Memphis Light Gas & Water workers replacing your water meter and possibly suggesting you filter your water for three months.

MLGW representatives say they’re giving people water pitchers with filters in the event lead leaks out during a meter replacement.

The goal is to replace everyone’s water meter with a smart meter by 2020.

William Overton lives in Frayser where work was being done Tuesday and said his was already switched out.

“I am probably getting a more accurate reading because they didn’t always read the meters -- They estimated," said Overton.

In his case, MLGW didn’t need to contact him.

However, if crews see a lead line in your water meter box, they’re going to give you a water pitcher with a filter to use for three months.

If they can't determine what the material is, he said they’ll still suggest you use the pitcher.

“Whenever you disturb a line, you have the potential of putting lead into the water, so that’s why we leave the pitchers," said Alonzo Weaver, vice president of engineering and operations at MLGW.

Weaver says the pitchers are all purely out of caution.

Memphians shouldn’t expect a change in their water quality.

MLGW workers will notify you by mail or in person if they recommend you use them and will bring it to your doorstep with instructions.

Workers have been replacing the lead services for about two years and expect it to take several more years for them to be finished.

“There was a period of time where lead was the go-to material for housing construction," said Weaver.

They’re currently looking at houses built before 1940 all around the city.

Although you’ll be notified if you have a lead line, MLGW says if you have any concerns about your water, they’ll still come out and test for free if you call 901-320-3950.

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