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We Remain Open During Stay-at-Home Mandate

The Governor of Illinois has just issued a “stay at home” order essentially closing all “non-essential” businesses.  As of 3:35 PM on 3/20/20, Illinois has not defined what is an essential business.  As a public health laboratory, Suburban Laboratories should be considered an essential business as other states with similar mandates have determined.  Until we hear otherwise, Suburban Laboratories will remain open to serve our customers.
We will be monitoring the situation closely and if anything changes, we will notify clients via email and via our website.  If you have any questions, contact your project manager or me.
Jarrett Thomas
(708) 544-3260 x218
2020-03-20T16:11:58-05:00March 20th, 2020|News|

Additional COVID-19 Precautions Taken

First and foremost, nothing is more important than the health and safety of our employees and customers. Suburban Laboratories remains open to serve you and we are taking the following actions to protect us all:

Pick-up and drop off samples

  • Our courier and field service remain open; however we ask that human interaction and social distancing be maintained

Remote work

  • Sales, managerial and most office/project management staff are working remotely

Practice staff partitioning

  • Staff hours are being staggered to minimize overall number of people in the facility
  • Communal lunch and breaks are to be avoided and no more the 5 people may be in one room at the same time

Restrict meetings and social gatherings

  • All business sponsored social gatherings are suspended
  • Video and voice conferencing shall replace face to face meetings
  • Employees should limit physical meetings with external parties

Cleaning and disinfection

  • Staff will clean between shifts and not permit cross-contact between incoming and outgoing shifts
  • Hand sanitizer, spray disinfectant and disinfectant wipes are available throughout the facility and in all vehicles
  • Sterile gloves are to be used whenever possible. Gloves are available throughout the facility

Travel is restricted

  • No regional travel without President approval (vehicle travel does count as travel)
  • Sales staff to cease face-to-face sales calls – calls to happen remotely
  • All employees to follow travel advisories from global and regional health authorities

All respiratory illness shall be reported immediately to management

  • Individuals who are feel sick or have a respiratory illness are required to stay home and seek medical attention if necessary
  • If an individual becomes sick while at work, the employee will be sent home and all areas the employee interacted will be disinfected following CDC guidance
  • Employees testing positive for COVID-19 or who have come in direct contact with someone testing positive are required to notify management immediately.
2020-03-20T16:07:26-05:00March 20th, 2020|News|

Response to COVID-19 Pandemic

Dear Employees and Customers,

Nothing is more important than the health and safety of our employees and customers.  At Suburban Laboratories, we are closely monitoring the spread of the coronavirus COVID-19.  Our company intends to remain open during this crisis.  As a part of our general laboratory safety protocols and aseptic laboratory practices, we already have many policies and procedures in place to minimize contamination.  Those practices, including use of sterile gloves, personal protective equipment, disinfection procedures and our laboratory grade ventilation system also helps prevention of contamination and spread of COVID-19.

As a precaution, Suburban Laboratories is advising any employee that comes down with flu-like symptoms to stay home from work until it can be determined that they are not COVID-19 positive.  Should an individual that has been in our facilities test positive or have been in contact with someone that has tested positive with COVID-19, additional cleaning and disinfecting procedures will be taken.

Although this virus is something that should not be taken lightly, simple precautions like washing your hands regularly with soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds and practicing “social distancing” approaches have been proven to combat the virus.

We will issue any updates to our policies via our website.  If you have any further questions about COVID-19 please refer to the CDC website or reach out to me.

Best Regards,

Suburban Laboratories, Inc.

Jarrett Thomas


2020-03-13T15:24:58-05:00March 13th, 2020|News|

2019 Holiday Hours

Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Hours

Thursday 11/28/19:  All Offices Closed.

Friday 11/29/19:  All Offices Closed.

Friday 12/6/19:  Closing at 12:00 PM for a company function.

Tuesday 12/24/19:  All Offices Closed.

Wednesday 12/25/19:  All Offices Closed.

Tuesday 12/31/19:  All offices open but reduced staff.  Contact your Project Manager for availability.

Wednesday 1/1/20:  All Offices Closed.

Due to a 1-day incubation time, drinking water coliform samples will not be set up on the Monday 12/23/19 and Tuesday 12/31/19.  Emergency samples, special projects or samples with short holding times must be arranged with your Project Manager.

2019-11-26T10:47:02-06:00November 26th, 2019|News|

New IL Construction Sample Analysis Requirements

The Illinois EPA adopted new public water supply rules on July 25, 2019 that include modifications to analysis and reporting of new construction bacterial samples.  Under the new rules, new construction samples must be reported as presence or absence of total coliform bacteria.  This is a change from previous reporting requirements of no bacterial growth as measured by the membrane filtration method per Standard Methods 9222B.  This change allows laboratories to adopt current presence/absence methods utilized for the analysis of routine compliance distribution samples for total coliform and e. coli.  While the membrane filtration technique remains an approved method for both new construction and distribution samples, additional confirmation steps are now required when any bacteria is found to be present, leading to additional days of testing, increased turnaround time and cost. Effective immediately, Suburban Laboratories will no longer be using the membrane filter method.

Due to these rule changes, Suburban Laboratories has updated its policy to analyze all new construction samples by Colilert Presence/Absence method 9223B.  This allows for more efficient analysis and faster reporting of results.  It is understood that on some rare cases, a total count of coliform bacteria or e. coli is preferred.  In these situations, Suburban Laboratories will analyze samples via method 9223B using Quanti-tray to obtain a quantifiable bacteria value.  This procedure employs the same technique as in the presence/absence method, detects down to one (1) organism per 100 mL, and is an approved EPA method for drinking water samples.  If you require quantification of your coliform samples, you must notify your project manager and specify this on all paperwork when delivering samples to the lab.

Image result for idexx colilert

2019-10-21T14:53:18-05:00October 21st, 2019|News|

FlashPoint: The Fastest Way to Get Your Reports

When reports and invoices are generated they are automatically uploaded to our client portal FlashPoint®. All clients have access to FlashPoint and in the settings can choose to have reports and invoices automatically emailed to them. FlashPoint is the fastest way to get reports and invoices. Without FlashPoint, the delivery procedure is manual, takes longer and is potentially less accurate. To improve on-time delivery, accuracy and efficiency, effective January 1, 2019 we will be using FlashPoint for all client reports and invoices. Clients who do not already have an online account will be enrolled to receive reports and invoices electronically. This process will allow you to receive reports and invoices by email the instant they are generated, retrieve old information and check the status of work in progress. It will also help us in our mission to protect the environment by reducing paper and energy.  To sign up for FlashPoint access, visit or contact your Account Manager.

FlashPoint Client AccessFlashPoint Client Access

2018-11-19T10:29:06-06:00November 19th, 2018|News|

Michelle Carpenter, PhD Hired as Technical Manager

Suburban Laboratories is pleased to announce the hiring of Michelle Carpenter, Ph.D. as Technical Manager for its Geneva, Illinois facility.

Dr. Carpenter has more than 27 years’ experience managing, complex technical operations with special emphasis in process auditing and method development.  She worked for six years as a Quality Assurance Manager and Quality Systems Auditor and six years as the Chief Technical Officer for IIM Laboratory Quality Consultants in Houston, Texas.  Most recently, she worked as Senior Business Consultant for Labtopia, a laboratory quality assurance, technical training and LIMS consulting company also located in Houston.  Dr. Carpenter received her Ph.D. and M.S in Environmental Chemistry from Madison University and B.S. in Biochemistry and Biology from Mary Baldwin University.

“We are delighted to have someone of Michelle’s caliber lead our laboratory. Her expertise with method development, quality assurance, laboratory management and process improvement in the environmental, petrochemical and food & beverage industries will complement our experienced team and provided added value for Suburban Laboratories’ clients” says Jarrett Thomas, CEO of Suburban Laboratories, Inc.

2018-10-26T07:39:51-05:00October 26th, 2018|News|

Our Oak Brook Location Has Moved

Effective Monday July 16, 2018 our Oak Brook Terrace Service Center has moved to:

1S132 Summit Ave Ste. 101A
Oak Brook Terrace, IL 60181

This service center is an unmanned location that houses our state-of-the-art custody lockers.  Clients can drop off samples between the hours of 7:00 AM and 6:00 PM Monday through Friday.  Suburban Laboratories will pick up samples from the custody lockers at Noon and 3:00 PM Monday through Friday.  Clients are reminded that to ensure samples have sufficient holding time remaining to transport and process samples, samples must be delivered to the lockers as soon as possible after collection. Ice is provided on-site for samples requiring thermal preservation.

For questions contact Pat Rodriguez at (708) 544-3260 ext 214.

2018-07-16T14:22:24-05:00July 16th, 2018|News|

Upcoming Conferences January-March 2018

Join Suburban Labs at these upcoming conferences and seminars:

  • January 18 – January 19, 2018:  WI Water Well Association Ground Water Conference Wisconsin Dells, WI.
  • January 26, 2018:  Midwest Water Analysts Association 2018 Winter Meeting and Expo,  Kenosha, WI
  • February 21, 2018:  IWWSG/IWEA Joint Pre-treatment Meeting, Oak Brook, IL
  • February 26 – February 28, 2018:  WI Association of School Business Officials Facilities Management Conference – Wisconsin Dells, WI.
  • March 19 – March 22, 2018:  IL Section of the American Water Works Association Watercon 2018, Springfield, IL.
  • March 25 – March 29, 2018:  WI Rural Water Association – Lacrosse, WI.
2018-01-08T07:42:28-06:00January 8th, 2018|News|

2017 Holiday Hours

Christmas and New Year’s Hours

Friday 12/15/17:  Closing at 12:00 PM for a company function. Due to a 24 hour incubation time, membrane filter coliform samples will not be set up after 12:00 PM on Thursday, 12/14/16

Friday 12/22/17:  Oak Brook Terrace Service Center Only – Closed

Monday 12/25/17:  All Offices Closed

Tuesday 12/26/17:  All Offices Closed

Friday 12/29/17:  Oak Brook Terrace Service Center Only – Closed

Monday 01/01/18:  All Offices Closed

Tuesday 01/02/18:  All Offices Closed

Emergency samples, special projects or samples with short holding times must be pre-arranged with your account manager.

2017-12-15T07:47:49-06:00December 15th, 2017|News|