Passaic Valley Water Commission-High Crest (PVWC-High Crest) Public Water System recently violated a drinking water standard. Although this incident was not an emergency, as our customers, you have a right to know what happened and what we are doing to correct this situation.
We routinely monitor for the presence of drinking water contaminants, including disinfection byproducts such as total trihalomethanes (TTHM). The Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) for TTHM is 80 µg/L (one µg/L is approximately one part per billion). Compliance with the MCL is based on a running annual average (RAA). The RAA is calculated by averaging all samples collected in the system for the past 12 months. The RAA for the 2nd quarter of 2019 was equal to 81 µg/L, which exceeds the MCL.
The PVWC-High Crest Public Water System is supplied potable water that is purchased from the Butler Water Department. The Butler Water Department operates a surface water treatment plant that produces potable water from the Kakeout Reservoir. The incoming water from Butler water department is routinely directed to two water storage tanks. These tanks are fitted with an aeration treatment system to reduce the level of incoming TTHMs. When chlorine is added to water that contains natural organic matter it reacts with the organic matter to form disinfectant byproducts such as Total Trihalomethanes (TTHMs).
This is an ongoing violation whereyou were notified in mailings last November 2018 and March 2019 that the TTHM MCL was exceeded for the 4th quarter of 2018 and the 1st quarter of 2019, respectively. The current TTHM level is 64.0 µg/L which is below the 80 µg/L MCL, but because of how compliance with the MCL is mathematically calculated (based on the RAA) the MCL may also exceed for the next quarter, even though the TTHM level is decreasing, so you may continue to receive these notices.
What should I do?
- There is nothing you need to do. You do not need to boil your water or take other corrective actions. If a situation arises where the water is no longer safe to drink, you will be notified within 24 hours.
- If you have a severely compromised immune system, have an infant, are pregnant, or are elderly, you may be at increased risk and should seek advice from your health care providers about drinking this water.
What does this mean?
- This is not an emergency. If it had been an emergency, you would have been notified within 24 hours.
- TTHMs are four volatile organic chemicals which form when chlorine reacts with natural organic matter in the water.
- People who drink water containing trihalomethanes in excess of the MCL over many years may experience problems with their liver, kidneys, or central nervous system, and may have an increased risk of getting cancer.
What is being done?
- PVWC is working with Butler Water Department Staff to reduce the incoming levels of organics and TTHMs.
- PVWC is working with a consultant to evaluate a change in disinfection treatment in the High Crest system to reduce TTHM formation.
- PVWC is also working to design the routing of the incoming water supply so that it only goes through the two water storage tanks to receive aeration treatment to reduce TTHMs.
For more information, please contact our Customer Service Department at 973-340-4300 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please share this information with all the other people who drink this water, especially those who may not have received this notice directly (for example, people in apartments, nursing homes, schools, and businesses). You can do this by posting this notice in a public place or distributing copies by hand or mail.
This notice is being sent to you by PVWC-High Crest – Public Water System ID No. NJ1615003