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 through 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.
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the ground prior to being withdrawn.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
or they can
be obtained from the City of Hollywood Water
Quality Division by calling (954) 921-3414.
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.
Following softening, fluoride is added for
enhanced protection against tooth decay.
Filtration is used following softening to further
treat the softened water by removing the
remaining particulate matter from the treated
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.
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.
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,
More than 23,000 tests are performed each
year to comply with national standards
in WWS’ NELAP* certified drinking water
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
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?
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
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
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
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
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.
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
National Centers for Disease Control
American Water Works Association
South Florida Water Management District