Cross-Connection Control Programs for Cities
We provide cities or municipal authorities with a cross-connection control program that frees up water superintendants or faculty from having to maintain or create cross-connection control program for their city. If your city does not have an ordinance setup, we can help you set one up. The ordinance is the ‘teeth’ that allows you to enforce the state and local laws in your city.
We handle all of the setup and organization of the cross-connection control program for your city. This discovery process involves visiting the consumer/utility customer, giving them the state and/or city ordinances, and asking to see their incoming water line. We do an inspection to determine whether or not a cross-connection prevention device is needed.
We maintain all the cross-connection control paperwork for your city. We send the first, second, and third notices (if needed) to homes and businesses that need tested and work with the local water utility to make sure each cross-connection prevention device gets tested. If a backflow device is not installed or tested, the city will be notified to handle the consumer/utility customer at their discretion. All records are kept on file and we give the city an annual report each year.
A third party is always a good thing when you’re running a cross-connection control program. We act as a mediator between the consumer/utility customer, the cross-connection testers, and your city. They can call us and we’ll work as a non-partial intermediary between your city to help sort out any issues between your city, the cross-connection testers, and the commercial buildings and industrial facilities in your city.
Water superintendents love this water management service because it frees them up to supervise their employees, manage their finances, attend meetings, and handle emergencies. Between office duties and the problems in the field, the last thing they want to deal with is a cross-connection control program with different schedules for each constituent in the city, which is exactly what we do best.
Cross-Connection Control Responsibilities
Under Public Law 99-339 – the Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments of 1986 – and regulations of most states, the water purveyor (a public utility, mutual water company, county water district, or municipality that delivers drinking water to customers) has the primary responsibility for preventing water from unapproved sources, or any other substances, from entering the public potable water (water of sufficient quality to serve as drinking water) systems. The health agency (a local public service such as a state EPA) has the overall responsibility for preventing water from unapproved sources entering either the potable water system within the water consumer’s premises or the public water supply directly.
To the water purveyors this means that they must plan and diligently execute a program of cross-connection control which either eliminates all cross-connections or requires the installation and maintenance of a proper type of approved backflow prevention assembly at the water service connection whenever a potential hazard is determined to exist in the consumer’s system.
To the health agencies this means that they must plan and diligently-execute a program of cross-connection control specifically within the consumer’s systems. Or, where the health agency and water purveyor develop a joint coordinated program, the cross-connection control program may go all the way to the last outlet in the consumer’s system.
To the plumbing inspection agencies this means that they must plan and diligently execute a program whereby plumbing type cross-connections will not be permitted to be built into a building; or, where a cross-connection to the consumer’s potable water system can not be avoided, an approved backflow prevention assembly will be required.
If you are a water purveyor, a public utility, a water company, or water district, we can help you create a backflow program that meets your local health agencies’ needs.
Responsibilities of the Health Agency, Water Purveyor, Plumbing Official, Consumer, and Certified Backflow Prevention Assembly Testers
The implementation of regulations for the effective control of cross-connections requires the full cooperation of the water purveyor, the health agency, the plumbing official, the consumer, and the backflow prevention tester. Each has its responsibilities and each must carry out its phase of a coordinated cross-connection control program in order to prevent pollution or contamination of the potable water supplies.
As certified backflow testers in Indiana, Ohio, and Michigan, we work with water purveyors, health agencies, and consumers to fulfill your responsibilities under the Safe Drinking Water Act.
Responsibility of the Health Agency
The health agency has the responsibility for promulgating and enforcing laws, rules, regulations and policies to be followed in carrying out an effective cross-connection control program.
The health agency has the primary responsibility of insuring that the water purveyor operates the public potable water systems free of actual or potential sanitary hazards, including unprotected cross-connections. This agency has the further responsibility of insuring that the water purveyor provides an approved water supply at the point of delivery to the consumer’s water system and, further, that he requires the consumer to install, test and properly maintain an approved backflow prevention assembly(s) on the service connection(s) when required.
The health agency has the primary responsibility of insuring that the consumer’s potable water system is provided with an approved water supply and that its potable water system(s) is maintained free of sanitary hazards, including unprotected cross-connections.
Responsibility of the Water purveyor
Under the cross-connection control regulations or rules of most states and territories the water purveyor has primary responsibility to prevent water from unapproved sources, or any other substance, entering the public water supply system. The water purveyor is prohibited by these regulations or rules from installing or maintaining a water services connection to a consumer’s water systems within its jurisdiction where a health, system, plumbing or pollution hazard exists, or will probably exist, unless the public potable water supply is protected against backflow by an approved backflow prevention assembly(s) installed at the service connection(s) (i.e., point of delivery).
The water purveyor’s responsibility begins at the source and includes all of the public water distribution systems, including the service connection, and ends at the point of delivery to the consumer’s water system(s). In addition, the water purveyor shall exercise reasonable vigilance to insure that the consumer has taken the proper steps to protect the public potable water system. To insure that the proper precautions are taken the water purveyor is required to determine the degree of hazard to the public potable water system. When it is determined that backflow prevention assembly is required for the protection of the public system the water purveyor shall require the consumer, at the consumer’s expense, to install an approved backflow prevention assembly at each service connection, to test immediately upon installation and annually, or more often, to properly repair and maintain such assembly or assemblies and to keep adequate record of each test and subsequent maintenance and repair, including materials or replacement parts.
Responsibility of the Plumbing Official
The building and safety department of the appropriate political jurisdiction has the responsibility to not only review building plans and inspect plumbing as it is installed: but, it has the explicit responsibility of preventing cross-connections from being designed and built into the structures within its jurisdiction. Where the review of building plans suggests or detects the potential for cross-connections being made as an integral part of the plumbing system the plumbing official has the responsibility under most building codes for requiring that such cross-connection practices be either eliminated or provided with approved backflow prevention equipment.
The plumbing official’s responsibility begins at the point of service (i.e., the downstream side of the water meter or service connection) and carries throughout the entire length ofthe consumer’s water system. The plan inspector should inquire about the intended use of water at any point where it is suspect that a cross-connection might be made or where one is actually called for by the plans. When such is discovered, suitable approved backflow prevention assembly shall be required and be properly installed.
Responsibility of the Consumer
The consumer has the responsibility of preventing pollutants and contaminants from entering his/her potable water system. The consumer’s responsibility starts at the point of delivery from the public potable water system and includes all of his/her water systems. The consumer, at his/her own expense, shall install, operate, test and maintain approved backflow prevention assemblies as directed by the authority having jurisdiction.
The consumer shall maintain accurate records of tests and repairs made to backflow prevention assemblies and provide the administrative authority having jurisdiction with copies of such records. The records shall be on forms approved by the administrative authority having jurisdiction and shall include the list of materials or replacement parts used. Following any repair, overhaul, re-piping or relocation of an assembly the consumer shall have it tested to insure that it is in good operating condition and will prevent backflow. Tests, maintenance and repairs of backflow prevention assemblies shall be made by a certified backflow prevention assembly tester.
When requested by the water purveyor or health agency, the consumer shall appoint a water supervisor who shall be responsible for conformance with all applicable laws, rules and regulations pertaining to cross-connection control; for the installation, operation and use of all water piping systems, backflow prevention assemblies and water-using equipment on the premises; and for the avoidance of unprotected cross-connections. The water supervisor should be the consumer or any full-time employee appointed by the consumer who has a thorough knowledge of the installation, operation and maintenance of all water systems and backflow prevention assemblies on the consumer’s premises. In the event of pollution or contamination of the public or the consumer’s premises, the owner or water supervisor shall promptly take steps to confine further spread of the pollution or contamination within the system and should notify the local health officer and the water purveyor of the condition. The person responsible for the consumer’s water system(s) (consumer or water supervisor) shall take appropriate measures to free the water system(s) of any pollutants of contaminants.
Responsibility of the Certified Backflow Tester
The certified backflow tester is responsible for performing accurate field tests and for repairing or overhauling backflow prevention assemblies and making reports of such repair to the consumer and responsible authorities on forms approved by the administrative authority having jurisdiction. The certified backflow tester shall include the list of materials or replacement parts used. The certified backflow tester shall be equipped with and be capable of using all the necessary tools, gages, and other equipment necessary to properly test, repair and maintain backflow prevention assemblies. It will be the certified backflow tester‘s responsibility to insure that original manufactured replacement parts are used in the repair of or replacement of parts in a backflow prevention assembly. A certified backflow tester shall perform the work and be responsible for the accuracy of all tests and reports.
Keep potable and non-potable water separated by maintaining and testing all backflow and cross-connection control devices. This is a small insurance policy against a disaster and many times required by the laws in your area. We do backflow testing in the Midwest including Indiana, Ohio, and Michigan.