HCWA releases Water Quality Report
While it’s difficult to find any good to come from the Coronavirus and COVID-19 pandemic, perhaps reassurance that local tap water has remained safe and clean for consumption is one less thing Henry County residents have to worry about.
The Henry County Water Authority’s (HCWA) annual Water Quality Report, which is also referred to appropriately as a Consumer Confidence Report (CCR), has been published and is available for review on this website (www.hcwa.com). The results reveal that the utility is in complete compliance with the highest regulatory requirements for drinking water safety. The Authority boasts no violations of the industry’s drinking water standards this past year.
Thus, HCWA customers and local consumers have further empirical, scientific evidence that their tap water is safe to drink.
The 2020 Henry County Water Quality Report, which is being released during a time of heightened awareness of the importance of public health, provides insights on: “What is in my drinking water and why?” The Water Quality Report also answers the more fundamental question of: “Is my tap water safe to drink?” Authority officials can say with confidence – which comes from the Report’s findings and in-depth laboratory analysis – “Absolutely!”
The lab data analyzed and included in the 2020 Henry County Water Quality Report include measures of regulated substances found at the source, during drinking water production at both HCWA water treatment plants, and within the HCWA distribution system. These lab results provide consumers with the assurance that the detected amounts of any potential contaminants are well within the limits allowed by Georgia EPD, in accordance with federal guidelines of the Safe Drinking Water Act enforced by the U.S. EPA.
Potential contaminants for which regulatory agencies require testing include those categorized as organic, inorganic, or microbiological, or as the result of disinfectants or disinfectant by-products used in the drinking water treatment process. The Henry County Water Quality Report also outlines the treatment technologies and processes used by the HCWA in its water system operations to assure continuous production and distribution of safe drinking water.
Since the onset of the Coronavirus outbreak and COVID-19 pandemic, public health officials, including the water professionals at the HCWA, have been consistent with their message that the Coronavirus causing COVID-19 is not transmitted through public water treatment or distribution.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), conventional water treatment, like what the HCWA provides for its customers daily, uses chlorine disinfection and filtration to remove pathogens, such as the Coronavirus that causes COVID-19. In addition, the World Health Organization (WHO) adds that the presence of the Coronavirus has not been detected in drinking water supplies. Furthermore, there is no evidence that the virus is or has been present in public drinking water systems.
“During this public health crisis, we are proud to note that tap water is a key element of the defense, and we have fielded more questions about the safety of tap water as a result,” says Pam Burnett, Executive Director of the Georgia Association of Water Professionals (GAWP). “Referring people to these (Water Quality) Reports was one of our ways to reassure them that they could rely on the safety of the water supplied to their homes. We are grateful that water professionals have been at work 24/7 during the pandemic; they are heroes behind the scenes.”
HCWA water professionals have the professional training and credentials, in addition to the industry’s best and most proven technologies and processes, to assure customers are drinking the highest quality drinking water possible. Included within this year’s Henry County Water Quality Report is an overview of the HCWA system and details of the HCWA’s award winning performance in water production and distribution.
“At no time during the history of this Authority has drinking water safety and regulatory compliance been more on the minds of our customers,” says Lindy Farmer, HCWA General Manager since 1982. “This year, it’s especially important to reassure consumers that their tap water is clean and safe to drink, and unaffected by the pandemic. We are fortunate to have more than 200 dedicated water professionals who are committed to making sure that’s the case.”
Water Quality Reports became a regulatory requirement of public water utilities such as the HCWA following the 1996 Amendments to the Safe Drinking Water Act. The intent of these annual reports is to increase the public’s “right to know” about the nature and contents of their drinking water.
The 2020 Henry County Water Quality Report is available on this website at http://waterqualityreport.hcwa.com/report.pdf. Hard copies also are available at the HCWA Headquarters located at 1695 Highway 20 West in McDonough. In addition, customers can request a copy be sent to them by mail by contacting the HCWA at 770-957-6659.
Chris Wood, Ph.D.
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