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Brunersburg Water District, Ohio EPA Resolve Violations

In a settlement with Ohio EPA, the Brunersburg Water District, located in Defiance County has agreed to examine water usage and potential cross connections in its water system and address elevated levels of disinfection byproducts in the system.

Drinking water suppliers are required by state regulations to periodically survey their system to look at water use practices within consumers’ homes and determine whether there are actual or potential cross-connections to the consumers’ water system that would allow contaminants to backflow into the public water supply. During a 2011 inspection by Ohio EPA, the Brunersburg Water District could not show documentation that a survey had been done.

In addition, the district had several violations for exceeding the maximum contaminant level for total trihalomethanes (TTHM), a type of disinfection byproduct. Research indicates elevated levels of disinfection byproducts in drinking water may increase risk for reproductive issues or bladder cancer when consumed over many years.

Terms of the agreement require the water district to conduct water use practice surveys checking for cross-connections to the public water system. Brunersburg also must comply with TTHM monitoring and reporting requirements.

Brunersburg must submit a general plan to Ohio EPA describing three options for reducing TTHMs and rationale for the option selected; an engineering description of the district’s existing facilities, treatment and disposal to be installed including the construction phases and estimate of costs; sources of funds to cover costs and a detailed schedule necessary to attain compliance. If necessary following approval of the general plan, the district will follow up with a pilot study to evaluate the source water for the treatment system.

The water district serves approximately 1,500 people.

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