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Tests ID septic systems as tainted wells source

SOUTH BEND – Health officials investigating well contamination in northern Indiana say tests show septic systems are to blame.

St. Joseph County health officials tell the South Bend Tribune that a yearlong test found 59 percent of Gilmer Park homes and 25 percent of Granger homes have high or exceedingly high levels of nitrates in their water.

County environmental health director Marc Nelson says the Environmental Protection Agency sets drinking water maximum nitrate limits at no more than 10 milligrams per liter, or 10 parts per million. The county health department has stricter standards of 6 mg/L, or 6 PPM.

Nelson says a group examining the well issues will meet next month to discuss possible solutions. He urges residents who are concerned to have their water tested and install filtration systems.