Water Quality Report for 2016
Broward County Water and Wastewater Services is pleased to provide you, our valued customers, with our 2016 Water Quality Report. In 2016, we continued our tradition of providing high quality drinking water to you at a reasonable price. Once again, our water met or exceeded all federal Safe Drinking Water Act standards.
 
In addition to providing high-quality drinking water, WWS continues to look to our long-term future by preserving and responsibly utilizing our community’s resources.

What does the utility do to assure my drinking water complies with federal and state standards?

Before water ever reaches your tap, it goes th​rough a multi-step treatment process.

Where does my water come from?

Your tap water originates from the Biscayne Aquifer, which lies 50-200 feet underground. The Aquifer is comprised primarily of limestone and sand.

Biscayne Aquifier

As a groundwater source, the Aquifer is naturally protected from undesirable microbial pathogens that are common in surface water supplies. This is due to the natural filtration that occurs in the Aquifer and the amount of time the water resides in the ground prior to being withdrawn.

Source Water Assessment

In 2016 the Florida Department of Environmental Protection performed a Source Water Assessment on our systems. The assessment was conducted to provide information about any potential sources of contamination in the vicinity of our wells. There are two (2) potential sources of contamination identified for the 1A system with a low susceptibility level, and nine (9) sources of contamination identified for the 2A system with a low susceptibility level. In 2016, FDEP performed a Source Water Assessment for the City of Hollywood which provides water for our 3A and 3B/C systems; there are fifteen (15) potential sources of contamination identified for the 3A/3BC systems with a low susceptibility level. The assessment results are available on the FDEP Source Water Assessment Protection Program website at dep.state.fl.us/swapp or they can be obtained from the City of Hollywood Water Quality Division by calling (954) 921-3414.

Softening

At the water treatment plant, the ground water is initially treated with lime and ferric chloride to reduce hardness and color. During this step of the treatment process, chemicals are added so that most of the hardness and particles in the water can be easily removed.

Fluoridation

Following softening, fluoride is added for enhanced protection against tooth decay.

Filtration

Filtration is used following softening to further treat the softened water by removing the remaining particulate matter from the treated water.

Disinfection

Disinfection, which is the final treatment step, is accomplished by the addition of chlorine and ammonia, otherwise known as chloramines. A small amount (residual levels) of chloramines disinfectant is maintained throughout the distribution system in order to control microbial regrowth.

Dewatering

Solids that settle out during the treatment process are collected and pumped to a settling basin, where they are thickened. The thickened solids are pumped to a vacuum filter, which removes excess water.

Monitoring

Broward County Water and Wastewater (WWS) Services routinely monitors for contaminants in your drinking water according to Federal and State laws, rules, and regulations. Except where indicated otherwise, this report is based on the results of our monitoring for the period of January 1 to December 31, 2016. Data obtained before January 1, 2016, and presented in this report are from the most recent testing done in accordance with the laws, rules, and regulations.

More than 23,000 tests are performed each year to comply with national standards in WWS’ NELAP* certified drinking water laboratory.

WWS also employs certified water treatment operators who conduct more than 317,000 process control tests annually. These tests ensure that the water treated and delivered to Broward County customers meets or exceeds all federal requirements for safe drinking water under the Safe Drinking Water Act.

The following provided table lists the parameters set by the Safe Drinking Water Act and the levels detected in potable water for Districts 1A, 2A, 3A and 3B/C.
* National Environmental Laboratory Accreditation Program (NELAP Institute/TNI)

What is in my water?

(Enlarge Test Results Chart)

2016 Water Quality Test Results 
DEFINITIONS FOR THE TABLES
Action Level or AL: The concentration of a contaminant which, if exceeded, triggers treatment or other requirements which a water system must follow.
Level 1 Assessment: A Level 1 assessment is a study of the water system to identify potential problems and determine (if possible) why total coliform bacteria have been found in our water system.
Maximum Contaminant Level or MCL: This is the highest level of contaminant that is allowed in water. MCLs are set as close to the MCLGs as feasible using the best available treatment technology.
Contaminant Level Goal or MCLG: The level of a contaminant in drinking water below which there is no known or expected risk to health. MCLGs allow for a margin of safety.
Maximum Residual Disinfectant Level or MRDL: The highest level of a disinfectant allowed in drinking water. There is convincing evidence that the addition of a disinfectant is necessary for control of microbial contaminants.
Maximum Residual Disinfectant Level Goal or MRDLG: The level of a drinking water disinfectant below which there is no known or expected risk to health. MRDLGs do not reflect the benefits of the use of disinfectants to control microbial contaminants.
Parts per billion (ppb) or Micrograms per liter (μg/l): One part by weight of analyte to 1 billion parts by weight of the water sample.
Parts per million (ppm) or Milligrams per liter (mg/l): One part by weight of analyte to 1 million parts by weight of the water sample.
ND: Means not detected and indicates that the substance was not found by laboratory analysis.
NA: Not applicable.
Treatment Technique (TT): A required process intended to reduce the level of a contaminant in drinking water.

How Do Contaminants Get Into Drinking Water?​

The sources of drinking water (both tap water and bottled water) include rivers, lakes, streams, ponds, reservoirs, springs, aquifers and wells. As water travels over the surface of the land or through the ground, it dissolves naturally occurring minerals and, in some cases, radioactive material, and can pick up substances resulting from the presence of animals or from human activity.

Contaminants that may be present in source water include:

(A) Microbial contaminants, such as viruses and bacteria, which may come from sewage treatment plants, septic systems, agricultural livestock operations and wildlife.
(B) Inorganic contaminants, such as salts and metals, which can be naturally-occurring or result from urban stormwater runoff, industrial or domestic wastewater discharges, oil and gas production, mining or farming activities.
(C) Pesticides and herbicides, which may come from a variety of sources such as agriculture, urban stormwater runoff and residential uses.
(D) Organic chemical contaminants, including synthetic and volatile organic chemicals, which are byproducts of industrial processes and petroleum production, and can also come from gas stations, urban stormwater runoff and septic systems.
(E) Radioactive contaminants, which can be naturally occurring or be the result of oil and gas production and mining activities.
In order to ensure that tap water is safe to drink, the EPA prescribes regulations which limit the amount of certain contaminants in water provided by public water systems. The Food and Drug Administration regulations establish limits for contaminants in bottled water, which must provide the same protection for public health. 

Do I need to take special precautions?

All drinking water, including bottled water, is expected to contain reasonably small amounts of some contaminants. The presence of contaminants does not necessarily indicate that the water poses a health risk. While microbial contaminants (such as virus, bacteria, Cryptosporidium and Giardia) do not pose a significant risk for utilities, such as WWS, using groundwater from the Biscayne Aquifer, this has emerged as an issue of concern and the focus of media attention for other communities, particularly those that rely on surface water. More information about contaminants and potential health effects can be obtained by calling the Environmental Protection Agency’s Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 800-426-4791.

Immuno-Compromised Persons

Some people may be more vulnerable to contaminants in drinking water than the general population. Immunocompromised persons, such as persons with cancer undergoing chemotherapy, persons who have undergone organ transplants, people with HIV/AIDS or other immune system disorders, some elderly, and infants can be particularly at risk from infections. These people should seek advice about drinking water from their health care providers. EPA/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines on appropriate means to lessen the risk of infection from Cryptosporidium and other microbiological contaminants are available from EPA’s Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 800-426-4791.

Lead in Drinking Water

If present, elevated levels of lead can cause serious health problems, especially for pregnant women and young children. Lead in drinking water comes primarily from materials and components associated with service lines and home plumbing. WWS is responsible for providing high quality drinking water, but cannot control the variety of materials used in plumbing components. When your water has been sitting for several hours, you can minimize the potential for lead exposure by flushing your tap for 30 seconds to two minutes before using water for drinking or cooking. If you are concerned about lead in your water, you may wish to have your water tested. Information on lead in drinking water, testing methods, and steps you can take to minimize exposure is available from the Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 800-426-4791 or at epa.gov/safewater/lead.

For General Information or to Request a Copy of this Report, contact:
WATER AND WASTEWATER SERVICES
2555 West Copans Road, Pompano Beach, FL 33069
Customer Service: 954-831-3250

 
Environmental Protection Agency
Safe Drinking Water Hotline Phone: 800-426-4791  |  epa.gov/safewater
 
National Centers for Disease Control
Phone: 800-232-4636  |  cdc.gov
 
American Water Works Association
Phone: 800-926-7337  |  awwa.org
 
South Florida Water Management District
Phone: 800-662-8876  |  sfwmd.gov

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