Following tests showing elevated lead levels in water samples from student residences on Broad Street last week, the University conducted additional water sampling. The results of that testing help the University’s Environmental Health and Safety Office (EHS) to understand more clearly the potential source of elevated lead levels along the Broad Street corridor.

Additional test results from several student residences and other campus buildings along Broad Street and College Street — much like the original tests at 72, 80, and 84 Broad Street — show levels of lead above EPA action levels in first-draw samples (water that has sat motionless for eight hours). However, flush samples of water that has been run for at least 30 seconds from the faucets, at all locations, show lead levels that are non-detectable or well below the EPA action level.

Based on current test results, the townhouses and the 113 Broad Street residence are outside the affected area.

In addition to levels of lead above EPA action levels in first-draw samples at faucets, testing of water entering several Colgate buildings from the Village of Hamilton supply lines has detected lead above the EPA action level. The Village and New York State Department of Health have been notified of these findings, and the Village is conducting its own testing.

Testing of water at the University pump house, which supplies the upper-campus buildings, has not exceeded the EPA action level. Samples taken at the Coop and Frank Dining Hall also show no detectable levels of lead. The only outlier on the upper campus was the observatory, whose first-draw lead levels exceeded the EPA action level, but campus EHS representatives believe those first-draw figures may be attributable to the infrequent use of the observatory water faucet. As with all of the Broad Street and College Street samples, the observatory flush sample tested below the EPA action level.

Sixteen Broad Street students who live at 72, 80, or 84 Broad Street — the buildings that were first discovered to have elevated lead levels in first-draw water samples — have taken blood tests. Student Health Services personnel have reported that none of the results show any detectable levels of lead.

The health and safety of students and other Colgate community members continue to be our number one concern. Colgate has provided alternative drinking water supplies to eliminate the need to consume water from the faucets in all campus-owned buildings along Broad Street and College Street as well as Chenango Nursery School while long-term corrective action is evaluated. Additionally, more testing will be conducted to help determine the source of these elevated lead levels.

For full test results, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency information on lead in drinking water, and answers to frequently asked questions, visit

Next steps

  • Water entering affected buildings will be considered non-potable until the source of the elevated lead levels has been confirmed and addressed.  
  • Kitchen water filters and water coolers are being installed in every university residence on Broad Street and College Street.
  • The University will continue to share updates as more testing is conducted and remedial efforts are put in place.
  • Colgate Health Services will continue to offer free blood testing to residents of Broad Street and College Street. Students who are concerned about exposure to lead can contact the Student Health Center to arrange for a blood test. This test is a single blood draw and will be conducted at no cost to you or your insurance. Test results usually take two to four days. Call 315-228-7750 for testing during regular health center hours between 8 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, and from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday.


Water Testing Results

Frequently Asked Questions