Water Quality Testing
MWRD drinking water quality is regulated by EPA and TDEC. Our laboratory and operators make safe and quality drinking water their top priority. To ensure goals are met, a multitude of analyses are performed daily on the raw source water, finished (tap) water, and distribution system water.
Monitoring for Other Contaminants
- Lead and copper monitoring for MWRD occurs every three years based on waivers issued by TDEC for reduced monitoring. MWRD tested 30 sites throughout the distribution system through 2014. Due to the recent population increase in the city, MWRD now tests 50 sites. We are currently in the process of testing for 2017. Results will be posted once they are confirmed.
- Inorganic Compounds (i.e.: arsenic, barium, chromium) and radionuclides are monitored every nine (9) years per TDEC regulations. MWRD has been granted waivers for reduced monitoring given the source water was found to have low levels or non-detects of these contaminants of concern. The next monitoring period for inorganics is 2021 and for radionuclides is 2023.
- Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are carbon containing molecules that have chemical properties allowing them to be present as gas under room temperature conditions. Synthetic organic compounds (SOCs) are man-made organic contaminants that are found in herbicides pesticides, and other agricultural chemicals. MWRD monitors the regulated VOCs annually and SOCs are monitored every three years per TDEC regulations.
- Disinfection by-products (DBPs) are compounds that form when the water treatment disinfectant used (sodium hypochlorite) reacts with organic impurities from the source water. These include compounds known as trihalomethane (THMs) and haloacetic acids (HAA5s). DBPs are monitored quarterly per TDEC regulations. There are eight (8) sampling sites within the distribution system that are based upon water age. The regulatory maximum contaminant level (MCL) for THMs is 80 ppb and HAA5s is 60 ppb. MWRD laboratory results for DBPs has consistently been below the regulatory MCL for both THMs and HAA5s.
- Federal regulations require utilities throughout the country to monitor what are referred to as unregulated contaminants. The goal of this monitoring is to help EPA determine where certain contaminants can occur and if there is a need for regulations of the identified contaminants. MWRD most recently participated in the unregulated contaminant testing (UCMR) in 2015. Another round of UCMR testing will begin in 2018.