State law requires public water systems to test for many contaminants, including nitrate, on a regular basis. Public water systems with nitrate levels over 10 mg/L must notify people who receive water from them.
If you own a private well, you are responsible for testing your own water. Certified water labs can provide information and instructions for getting your well water tested for nitrate. For a list of certified labs in Yakima County, visit: https://www.yakimacounty.us/344/Drinking-Water-Testing.
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Nitrate is only a concern for ingestion (eating and drinking). It is not absorbed through your skin.
Only a very small amount of water clings to smooth surfaces, like dishes. Water that has more than 10 mg/L of nitrate can be safely used to wash and sanitize dishes, tables, and eating utensils.
Very little water remains on washed surfaces and in laundered fabrics. Because these articles are not placed in the mouth, water having more than 10 mg/L of nitrate can be safely used for general cleaning and washing of clothing, bedding, and linens.
Low levels of nitrate have been found in breast milk, but the levels are not high enough to cause blue baby syndrome.