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National Drinking Water Database


National Drinking Water Database - Chemical Contaminants

Uranium-238


Status: Regulated - EPA has established a maximum legal limit in tapwater for this contaminant.

Uranium-238 is a radioactive element commonly found in most rocks; processed ore is used for power generation and weapons manufacture. [read more]

 
Detected
Found above
health guidelines
Found above
legal limit
States
7
3
3
Water utilities
152
24
24
People Served
860,421
105,430
105,430

Health Concerns for Uranium-238:


Uranium-238 Exposure by State

Water utilities in 7 states have reported detecting Uranium-238 in treated tap water since 2004, according to EWG's analysis of water quality data supplied by state water agencies.

StateWater Suppliers with Uranium-238 contaminationWater suppliers reporting Uranium-238 above health-based limits
SystemsPopulationSystemsPopulation
New Mexico86432,561991,962
New York1117,253312,033
Maine4949,952121,435
Arizona2360,00000
Wyoming252900
Nevada19100
Montana13500
Total152860,42124105,430

The Most Polluted Communities

152 water utilities reported detecting Uranium-238 in tap water since 2004, according to EWG's analysis of water quality data supplied by state water agencies

Ranked by highest average Uranium-238 level

RankSystem Population Served Positive test results of total reported tests Average Level
(Range)
1Mobile Manor Mobile Home Park
Skaneateles, NY
581 of 10.08 pCi/L
(0.08 pCi/L)
2Canandaigua City
Canandaigua, NY
10,7001 of 10.08 pCi/L
(0.08 pCi/L)
3Nichols Trailer Park
Shelburne, ME
759 of 90.07 pCi/L
(0.04 to 0.09 pCi/L)
4Los Arboles Mhp
Las Cruces, NM
3301 of 10.06 pCi/L
(0.06 pCi/L)
5EL Rancho Mobile Home Park (Santa Fe)
Santa Fe, NM
501 of 10.06 pCi/L
(0.06 pCi/L)
6Howards Trailer Park
Bucksport, ME
6512 of 120.05 pCi/L
(0.04 to 0.05 pCi/L)
7Happy Trails Mhp
Topsham, ME
3313 of 130.04 pCi/L
(0.04 to 0.05 pCi/L)
8Willard Drug Treatment Center
Willard, NY
1,2751 of 10.04 pCi/L
(0.04 pCi/L)
9G and S Water Works
Tucson, NM
673 of 30.04 pCi/L
(0.04 pCi/L)
10EL Llano Mdwca
Espanola, NM
1051 of 10.04 pCi/L
(0.04 pCi/L)

Health Based Limits for Uranium-238

StandardDescriptionLevel
Maximum Contaminant Limit (MCL)The enforceable standard which defines the highest level of a contaminant that is allowed in drinking water. MCLs are set as close to health-based limits (Maximum Contaminant Level Goals, or MCLGs) as feasible using the best available analytical and treatment technologies and taking cost into consideration. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.0.03 pCi/L

Testing Summary for Uranium-238

Are tests routinely required for Uranium-238 by federal law?Yes
Water suppliers reporting tests for Uranium-238 (2004-2009):398 of 47,576
Average testing rate for water supplier reporting tests (2004-2009):0.4 per year

Violation Summary for Uranium-238

Data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency includes the following violations of federal standards for Uranium-238 since 2004

Maximum Contaminant Level Exceedance Violations0
Monitoring Violations1
Reporting Violations0

Cancer

Type of concern: Reference:
Known human carcinogen Amer Conf of Gov't Industrial Hygienists - Carcinogens
Cancer - strong evidence CHE Toxicant and Disease Database

Persistence and bioaccumulation

Type of concern: Reference:
Not suspected to be bioaccumulative Environment Canada Domestic Substance List

Occupational hazards

Type of concern: Reference:
Allowed workplace exposures restricted to very low doses European Union - Classification & Labelling
Allowed workplace exposures restricted to very low doses National Library of Medicine HazMap
Allowed workplace exposures restricted to very low doses RTECS®- TLV/BEI,2007
Allowed workplace exposures restricted to low doses National Library of Medicine HazMap
Strong evidence of occupational hazards European Union - Classification & Labelling
Single case study detailing occupational hazards Frazier , L, 1998

Organ system toxicity (non-reproductive)

Type of concern: Reference:
Possible human renal toxicant CHE Toxicant and Disease Database
Classified as very toxic or harmful European Union - Classification & Labelling
Limited evidence of renal toxicity CHE Toxicant and Disease Database
Limited evidence of respiratory toxicity US EPA, Air Risk Information Support Center, 1990
Limited evidence of kidney toxicity Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, 2004
One or more animal studies show broad systemic effects at moderate doses (low dose studies may be unavailable for this ingredient) RTECS®- Gigiena i Sanitariya 1972
Classified as not expected to be potentially toxic or harmful Environment Canada Domestic Substance List
Classified as a low human health priority Environment Canada Domestic Substance List

Ecotoxicology

Type of concern: Reference:
Wildlife and environmental toxicity European Union - Classification & Labelling
Not suspected to be an environmental toxin Environment Canada Domestic Substance List



Government, industry, academic studies and classifications

government/industry list/academic study appears on list as classification(s)
European Union - Classification & LabellingURANIUM•Very toxic
•Very toxic by inhalation and if swallowed
•Danger of cumulative effects
•May cause long-term adverse effects in the aquatic environment
European Union - Classification & LabellingURANIUM COMPOUNDS•Very toxic
•Very toxic by inhalation and if swallowed
•Danger of cumulative effects
•Dangerous for the environment
•Toxic to aquatic organisms
Amer Conf of Gov't Industrial Hygienists - CarcinogensURANIUM (AS U)•Confirmed human carcinogen (ACGIH classification A1)
Association of Occupational and Environmental ClinicsURANIUM• o
Environment Canada Domestic Substance ListURANIUM•This chemical was deemed a low human health priority and was NOT flagged by CEPA for further attention. The chemical was flagged for suspected persistence.
National Library of Medicine HazMapURANIUM AND COMPOUNDS•Nephrotoxin: Yes;
•PEL (OSHA) - Permissible exposure limit (OSHA): 0.05 mg/m3, as U;
•STEL (ACGIH) - Short-term exposure limits (ACGIH): 0.6 mg/m3, as U;
•Bioaccumulates: Yes;
•TLV (ACGIH) - Threshold limit value (ACGIH): 0.2 mg/m3, as U;
•Flammability (NFPA) - NFPA flammability code: 0 = will not burn; 1 = must be preheated; 2 = high ambient temp required; 3 = may ignite at ambient temp; 4 = burn readily: 4: burns readily;
•IDLH (NIOSH) - Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health: 10 mg/m3, as U;
Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, 2004URANIUM•Kidney toxicity hazards: suspected
US EPA, Air Risk Information Support CenterURANIUM•Cardiovascular or blood toxicity hazards: suspected
US EPA, Air Risk Information Support Center, 1990URANIUM•Respiratory toxicity hazards: suspected
Frazier , L, 1998URANIUM•Reproductive toxicity hazards: suspected
Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, 2004URANIUM (SOLUBLE SALTS)•Kidney toxicity hazards: suspected
RTECS®- TLV/BEI,2007URANIUM• occupationally related - ACGIH TLV (human TWA)
RTECS®- Gigiena i Sanitariya 1972URANIUM• broad systemic - Broad systemic toxicity (rat LD50)



references

government/industry list/academic study reference
European Union - Classification & LabellingCPS&Q (Consumer Products Safety & Quality) formely known as ECB (European Chemicals Bureau). 2008. Classification and Labelling: Chemicals: Annex VI of Directive 67/548/EEC through the 31st ATP.
Amer Conf of Gov't Industrial Hygienists - CarcinogensACGIH (American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists) 2008. ACGIH cancer classification system. www.acgih.org.
Association of Occupational and Environmental ClinicsAOEC (Association of Occupational and Environmental Clinics). 2009. AEOC exposures codes and asthmagen designation.
Environment Canada Domestic Substance ListEC (Environment Canada). 2008. Domestic Substances List Categorization. Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA) Environmental Registry.
National Library of Medicine HazMapNLM (National Library of Medicine). 2006. HazMap — Occupational Exposure to Hazardous Agents.
Scorecard.org Toxicity InformationAgency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. Minimal risk Levels for Hazardous Substances. January 2004. http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/mrls.html, A Relational Database of Hazardous Chemicals and Occupational Diseases. Browse Haz-Map by Adverse Effects http://hazmap.nlm.nih.gov/hazmapadv.html, Landrigan, P.J., Goyer, R.A. Clarkson, T.W., Sandler, D.P., Smith, J.H., Thun, M.J., and R. Wedeen. The Work-Relatedness of Renal Disease. Archives of Environmental Health. 39(3): 225-230. 1984. (Table 2: Estimated Numbers of Workers in the United States with Potential Occupational Exposures to Known or Suspect Nephrotoxins)., Merck & Co. The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy. TABLE 226-1. Common Nephrotoxic Agents http://www.merck.com/pubs/mmanual/tables/226tb1.htm
Scorecard.org Toxicity InformationUS EPA, Air Risk Information Support Center. Health Effects Notebook for Hazardous Air Pollutants. http://www.epa.gov/ttnatw01/hlthef/hapindex.html
Scorecard.org Toxicity InformationUS EPA, Air Risk Information Support Center. Health Effects Notebook for Hazardous Air Pollutants. http://www.epa.gov/ttnatw01/hlthef/hapindex.html, Nemery, B. Metal Toxicity and the Respiratory Tract. European Respiratory Journal. 3(2): 202-219. 1990.(Table 1: Summary of pulmonary toxicity of metals).
Scorecard.org Toxicity InformationFrazier , L. and M. L. Hage (eds.). Reproductive Hazards of the Workplace, Wiley Europe, 1998. Table 10 (Partial List of Reproductive Toxicants) available at http://www.pharmacy.ohio-state.edu/homepage/safety/chemhygiene_table_repro.pdf.
Scorecard.org Toxicity InformationAgency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. Minimal risk Levels for Hazardous Substances. January 2004. http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/mrls.html
RTECS®- TLV/BEI,2007RTECS®- TLV/BEI,2007
RTECS®- Gigiena i Sanitariya 1972RTECS®- Gigiena i Sanitariya. For English translation, see HYSAAV. (V/O Mezhdunarodnaya Kniga, 113095 Moscow, USSR) V.1- 1936- 37(10),27,1972

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