Frequent Questions

Does the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) require public water systems to establish backflow prevention and cross-connection control programs?

The SDWA does not require public water systems to establish and maintain a backflow prevention or a cross-connection control program. However, since backflow contamination could be responsible for a water system?s failure to maintain SDWA standards, EPA has published the Cross-Connection Control Manual (EPA816-R-03-002; February 2003) to help systems identify scenarios that are susceptible to contamination. The manual also outlines several backflow prevention techniques. The manual and additional information are available at
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