Newsroom > DHHS News Release

August 25, 2009

Marla Augustine, Communications and Legislative Services, (402) 471-4047 or

For a public service announcement about free water testing featuring Jack Daniel, administrator in the Environmental Health Unit, go to 

Free Water Testing Offered at Husker Harvest Days

Lincoln—Nebraskans with private water wells can have their drinking water tested for nitrates during Husker Harvest Days in Grand Island on September 15, 16 and 17.

To find out the nitrate level in the water they drink, well owners can bring a cup-size sample to the Natural Resources Tent or to the University of Nebraska Building. There is no charge for the test, and well owners can get the results while they wait. The test takes about ten minutes.

Nitrates are a health concern for infants under six months of age and pregnant women, as well as anyone who has a weakened immune system. High levels of nitrates interfere with the blood’s ability to carry oxygen and can cause “blue baby” syndrome.

Livestock, especially cattle, are also susceptible to nitrate poisoning, resulting in lower milk production and loss of calves.

The water testing is sponsored by the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Public Health. For more information, contact the Environmental Health Unit, (402) 471-2541.

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