As stated in the Cross-Connection Control Manual of the United States Environmental Protection Agency, (Office of Water (4606M) EPA 816-R-03-002 www.epa.gov/safewater February 2003), the American Water Works Association (AWWA) recognized that “water purveyors have the responsibility to supply potable water to their customers. In the exercise of this responsibility, water purveyors or other responsible authorities must implement, administer, and maintain ongoing backflow prevention and cross-connection control programs to protect public water systems from the hazards originating on the premises of their customers and from temporary connections that may impair or alter the water in the public water systems. The return of any water to the public water system after the water has been used for any purpose on the customer’s premises or within the customer’s piping system is unacceptable and opposed by AWWA.
The water purveyor shall assure that effective backflow prevention measures commensurate with the degree of hazard, are implemented to ensure continual protection of the water in the public water distribution system. Customers, together with other authorities are responsible for preventing contamination of the private plumbing system under their control and the associated protection of the public water system. If appropriate back-flow prevention measures have not been taken, the water purveyor shall take or cause to be taken necessary measures to ensure that the public water distribution system is protected from any actual or potential backflow hazard. Such action would include the testing, installation, and continual assurance of proper operation and installation of backflow-prevention assemblies, devices, and methods commensurate with the degree of hazard at the service connection or at the point of cross connection or both. If these actions are not taken, water service shall ultimately be eliminated.
To reduce the risk private plumbing systems’, pose to the public water distribution system, the water purveyor’s backflow prevention program should include public education regarding the hazards backflow presents to the safety of drinking water and should include coordination with the cross-connection efforts of local authorities, particularly health and plumbing officials. In areas lacking a health or plumbing enforcement agency, the water purveyor should additionally promote the health and safety of private plumbing systems to protect its customers from the hazards of backflow.”
In order to effectuate these goals, it is necessary for customers to identify real or potential hazards within their plumbing systems. The most effective and least intrusive method to complete this effort is found within the following brief survey. Please choose your state and complete the following survey.