Oklahoma Panhandle State University opened a new campus
academic building in August of 2008 that will include an accredited
water quality testing laboratory that will open this summer. The need
for this lab in the Oklahoma Panhandle cannot be overstated.
Currently, all municipalities, schools, and industries in the
area that must have their water tested send their samples to Oklahoma
City, over 250 miles away. No more than 30 hours may elapse from the
time the sample is drawn to the time it is set up for testing, and that
time frame proves impractical for entities in rural locales.
The accredited lab means the communities surrounding OPSU will
save time and money and eliminate the need for resampling if the sample
is delayed arriving at the lab. In addition to testing drinking water,
the lab will eventually be set up to test general ground and surface
waters, wastewater for municipalities and industry such as the oil and
gas sector as well as from agricultural use, and soils for general
environmental purposes. Part of this type of collection also includes
testing mosquitoes for West Nile Virus and reporting the information to
aid state and federal agencies in monitoring disease progression.