Electrical outage and / or high water demand can result in low or negative water pressure and allow environmental contaminants to be drawn into the well water system. Also, failure of the well casing, pump seals or a host of other mechanical failures can lead to contamination of a well. Owners of individual wells need to be aware of precautionary measures and how to disinfect and have their well water tested by a laboratory after their water system loses pressure. The Public Health Laboratory offers well water testing using the Colitag method, which tests for the presence or absence of coliform bacteria. Coliform bacteria are indicators of potential contamination of a water supply and may originate from human, animal, or soil sources.
Water Collection & Submittal
It is important that well water be sampled correctly in order to get accurate results. Special care must be taken to assure that bacteria are not introduced into the sample when it is taken. Please read the Instructions for Sampling Private Water Supplies (PDF), which explains everything you need to know about unsafe water, water sample collection and the submittal process.