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The Latest: Chicago agency finds high chemical level in lake

PORTAGE, Ind. (AP) -- The Latest on a wastewater spill at a U.S. Steel plant in northern Indiana (all times local):

5:40 p.m.

Chicago's Department of Water Management says its sampling of Lake Michigan water near a wastewater spill at a U.S. Steel plant in Indiana has found a higher than expected level of a potentially carcinogenic chemical.

The agency says it found 2 parts per billion of hexavalent chromium in the lake about a mile north of the spill in Portage, Indiana, about 30 miles east of Chicago. It says that's a level higher than would be expected in raw lake water.

The Environmental Protection Agency has a drinking water standard of 100 parts per billion for all forms of chromium.

The EPA says it expects to receive results of its own water sampling Friday but that preliminary data suggests the chemical is not present near drinking water intakes.

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10:07 a.m.

Federal officials are awaiting more test results to determine whether a potentially carcinogenic chemical entered Lake Michigan during a wastewater spill at a U.S. Steel plant in northern Indiana.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency spokeswoman Rachel Bassler says testing Tuesday and Wednesday found no hexavalent chromium in the lake near the spill site in Portage, Indiana, about 30 miles east of Chicago.

She says preliminary results are expected Thursday on about 100 additional water samples.

Tuesday's spill caused by a pipe failure allowed wastewater containing hexavalent chromium from an electroplating process to enter a tributary 100 yards (90 meters) from Lake Michigan.

A water utility stopped drawing water from the lake and three beaches at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore and one in adjacent Ogden Dunes have been closed as a precaution.