Myrtle Creek assures residents that its drinking water is safe

Rest easy, residents of Myrtle Creek.
According to health standards established by the Environmental Protection Agency, trace amounts of radium in drinking water are perfectly safe.
In 2011, Environmental Working Group listed Myrtle Creek’s water with an average radium level of 0.6 picoCuries per liter, well below the federal Environmental Protection Agency’s established maximum contaminant level of 5 pC/L.
Myrtle Creek City Administrator Sean Negherbon said the city’s drinking water continues to more than meet guidelines from the Safe Drinking Water Act.
"Our goal at the city of Myrtle Creek is to provide you with a safe and dependable supply of drinking water," Negherbon wrote in a statement.
"As water travels over the surface of the land or through the ground, it dissolves naturally occurring minerals and, in some cases, radioactive material, and can pick up substances resulting from the presence of animals or from human activity," he wrote.
The city of Myrtle Creek treats water from Springbrook Springs and the South Umpqua River, and water from both sources showed small amounts of radium — the average result of 0.6 picoCuries per liter — detected in three of six samples during the city’s most recent testing in 2011.
No radium was detected in the other three samples.
"Detecting a contaminant at any level does not always mean there is a risk to public health," Negherbon said.
Negherbon said the city of Myrtle Creek’s Consumer Confidence Report is available online at and at City Hall.

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