Court documents: Spot checks at Water Gremlin show steps toward lead compliance

A new court filing demonstrates potential progress being made inside the Water Gremlin manufacturing facility in White Bear Township.

The company was forced to shut down temporarily to improve its safety procedures after the children of several employees had high levels of lead in their blood.

Earlier this month following a Ramsey County court hearing, Water Gremlin executives promised they were ready to get to work on lead safety enhancements at their plant.

Judge Leonardo Castro ordered Water Gremlin’s third party monitoring consultant to submit timely updates on the company’s progress in trying to eliminate lead remnants from leaving the factory floor and going home with workers.

In the first report filed after the company resumed operations, there is a table breaking down lead spot check-ins and around the facility. While some employee categories hit near 100% compliance, other areas lagged behind.

The second shift showed issues cleaning lead particles from faces and beards while leaving operational areas or during break with 11% of results falling into an unacceptable category. For third shift, it was hairnets and protective booties with 27% of results considered unacceptable.

The report also details efforts to clean lead dust out of workers vehicles with more than 200 vehicles still exceeding the state’s guidelines for family safety.

The Minnesota Department of Health released the following statement regarding the court filing:

"We, along with our partners at the state and county level, continue to monitor the progress of Water Gremlin. Protecting workers and their families from lead poisoning remains a high priority for us."