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TITLE 30ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY
PART 1TEXAS COMMISSION ON ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY
CHAPTER 290PUBLIC DRINKING WATER
SUBCHAPTER DRULES AND REGULATIONS FOR PUBLIC WATER SYSTEMS
RULE §290.46Minimum Acceptable Operating Practices for Public Drinking Water Systems

  (3) Copies of well completion data such as well material setting data, geological log, sealing information (pressure cementing and surface protection), disinfection information, microbiological sample results, and a chemical analysis report of a representative sample of water from the well shall be kept on file for as long as the well remains in service.

(o) Filter backwashing at surface water treatment plants. Filters must be backwashed when a loss of head differential of six to ten feet is experienced between the influent and effluent loss of head gauges or when the turbidity level at the effluent of the filter reaches 1.0 nephelometric turbidity unit (NTU).

(p) Data on water system ownership and management. The agency shall be provided with information regarding water system ownership and management.

  (1) When a water system changes ownership, a written notice of the transaction must be provided to the executive director. When applicable, notification shall be in accordance with Chapter 291 of this title (relating to Utility Regulations). Those systems not subject to Chapter 291 of this title shall notify the executive director of changes in ownership by providing the name of the current and prospective owner or responsible official, the proposed date of the transaction, and the address and phone number of the new owner or responsible official. The information listed in this paragraph and the system's public drinking water supply identification number, and any other information necessary to identify the transaction shall be provided to the executive director 120 days before the date of the transaction.

  (2) On an annual basis, the owner of a public water system shall provide the executive director with a written list of all the operators and operating companies that the public water system employs. The notice shall contain the name, license number, and license class of each employed operator and the name and registration number of each employed operating company. See §290.47(g) of this title.

(q) Special precautions. Special precautions must be instituted by the water system owner or responsible official in the event of low distribution pressures (below 20 pounds per square inch (psi)), water outages, microbiological samples found to contain E. coli or fecal coliform organisms, failure to maintain adequate chlorine residuals, elevated finished water turbidity levels, or other conditions which indicate that the potability of the drinking water supply has been compromised.

  (1) Boil water notifications must be issued to the customers within 24 hours using the prescribed notification format as specified in §290.47(e) of this title. A copy of this notice shall be provided to the executive director. Bilingual notification may be appropriate based upon local demographics. Once the boil water notification is no longer in effect, the customers must be notified in a manner similar to the original notice.

  (2) The flowchart found in §290.47(h) of this title shall be used to determine if a boil water notification must be issued in the event of a loss of distribution system pressure. If a boil water notice is issued under this section, it shall remain in effect until water distribution pressures in excess of 20 psi can consistently be maintained, a minimum of 0.2 mg/L free chlorine residual or 0.5 mg/L chloramine residual (measured as total chlorine) is present throughout the system, and water samples collected for microbiological analysis are found negative for coliform organisms.

  (3) A boil water notification shall be issued if the turbidity of the finished water produced by a surface water treatment plant exceeds 5.0 NTU. The boil water notice shall remain in effect until the water entering the distribution system has a turbidity level below 1.0 NTU, the distribution system has been thoroughly flushed, a minimum of 0.2 mg/L free chlorine residual or 0.5 mg/L chloramine residual (measured as total chlorine) is present throughout the system, and water samples collected for microbiological analysis are found negative for coliform organisms.

  (4) Other protective measures may be required at the discretion of the executive director.

(r) Minimum pressures. All public water systems shall be operated to provide a minimum pressure of 35 psi throughout the distribution system under normal operating conditions. The system shall also be operated to maintain a minimum pressure of 20 psi during emergencies such as fire fighting. As soon as safe and practicable following the occurrence of a natural disaster, a public water system that is an affected utility shall maintain a minimum of 35 psi throughout the distribution system during an extended power outage.

(s) Testing equipment. Accurate testing equipment or some other means of monitoring the effectiveness of any chemical treatment or pathogen inactivation or removal processes must be used by the system.

  (1) Flow measuring devices and rate-of-flow controllers that are required by §290.42(d) of this title (relating to Water Treatment) shall be calibrated at least once every 12 months. Well meters required by §290.41(c)(3)(N) of this title (relating to Water Sources) shall be calibrated at least once every three years.

  (2) Laboratory equipment used for compliance testing shall be properly calibrated.

    (A) pH meters shall be properly calibrated.

      (i) Benchtop pH meters shall be calibrated according to manufacturers specifications at least once each day.

      (ii) The calibration of benchtop pH meters shall be checked with at least one buffer each time a series of samples is run, and if necessary, recalibrated according to manufacturers specifications.

      (iii) On-line pH meters shall be calibrated according to manufacturer specifications at least once every 30 days.

      (iv) The calibration of on-line pH meters shall be checked at least once each week with a primary standard or by comparing the results from the on-line unit with the results from a properly calibrated benchtop unit. If necessary, the on-line unit shall be recalibrated with primary standards.

    (B) Turbidimeters shall be properly calibrated.

      (i) Benchtop turbidimeters shall be calibrated with primary standards at least once every 90 days. Each time the turbidimeter is calibrated with primary standards, the secondary standards shall be restandardized.

      (ii) The calibration of benchtop turbidimeters shall be checked with secondary standards each time a series of samples is tested, and if necessary, recalibrated with primary standards.

      (iii) On-line turbidimeters shall be calibrated with primary standards at least once every 90 days.

      (iv) The calibration of on-line turbidimeters shall be checked at least once each week with a primary standard, a secondary standard, or the manufacturer's proprietary calibration confirmation device or by comparing the results from the on-line unit with the results from a properly calibrated benchtop unit. If necessary, the on-line unit shall be recalibrated with primary standards.

    (C) Chemical disinfectant residual analyzers shall be properly calibrated.

      (i) The accuracy of manual disinfectant residual analyzers shall be verified at least once every 30 days using chlorine solutions of known concentrations.

      (ii) Continuous disinfectant residual analyzers shall be calibrated at least once every 90 days using chlorine solutions of known concentrations.

      (iii) The calibration of continuous disinfectant residual analyzers shall be checked at least once each month with a chlorine solution of known concentration or by comparing the results from the on-line analyzer with the result of approved benchtop amperometric, spectrophotometric, or titration method.

    (D) Ultraviolet (UV) light disinfection analyzers shall be properly calibrated.

      (i) The accuracy of duty UV sensors shall be verified with a reference UV sensor monthly, according to the UV sensor manufacturer.

      (ii) The reference UV sensor shall be calibrated by the UV sensor manufacturer on a yearly basis, or sooner if needed.

      (iii) If used, the Ultraviolet Transmittance (UVT) analyzer shall be calibrated weekly according to the UVT analyzer manufacturer specifications.

    (E) Systems must verify the performance of direct integrity testing equipment in a manner and schedule approved by the executive director.

(t) System ownership. All community water systems shall post a legible sign at each of its production, treatment, and storage facilities. The sign shall be located in plain view of the public and shall provide the name of the water supply and an emergency telephone number where a responsible official can be contacted.

(u) Abandoned wells. Abandoned public water supply wells owned by the system must be plugged with cement according to 16 Texas Administrative Code (TAC) Chapter 76 (relating to Water Well Drillers and Water Well Pump Installers). Wells that are not in use and are non-deteriorated as defined in those rules must be tested every five years or as required by the executive director to prove that they are in a non-deteriorated condition. The test results shall be sent to the executive director for review and approval. Deteriorated wells must be either plugged with cement or repaired to a non-deteriorated condition.

(v) Electrical wiring. All water system electrical wiring must be securely installed in compliance with a local or national electrical code.

(w) Security. All systems shall maintain internal procedures to notify the executive director by a toll-free reporting phone number immediately of the following events, if the event may negatively impact the production or delivery of safe and adequate drinking water:

  (1) an unusual or unexplained unauthorized entry at property of the public water system;

  (2) an act of terrorism against the public water system;

  (3) an unauthorized attempt to probe for or gain access to proprietary information that supports the key activities of the public water system;

  (4) a theft of property that supports the key activities of the public water system; or

  (5) a natural disaster, accident, or act that results in damage to the public water system.

(x) Public safety standards. This subsection only applies to a municipality with a population of 1,000,000 or more, with a public utility within its corporate limits.

  (1) In this subsection:

    (A) "Regulatory authority" means, in accordance with the context in which it is found, either the commission or the governing body of a municipality.

    (B) "Public utility" means any person, corporation, cooperative corporation, affected county, or any combination of these persons or entities, other than a municipal corporation, water supply or sewer service corporation, or a political subdivision of the state, except an affected county, or their lessees, trustees, and receivers, owning or operating for compensation in this state equipment or facilities for the transmission, storage, distribution, sale, or provision of potable water to the public or for the resale of potable water to the public for any use or for the collection, transportation, treatment, or disposal of sewage or other operation of a sewage disposal service for the public, other than equipment or facilities owned and operated for either purpose by a municipality or other political subdivision of this state or a water supply or sewer service corporation, but does not include any person or corporation not otherwise a public utility that furnishes the services or commodity only to itself or its employees or tenants as an incident of that employee service or tenancy when that service or commodity is not resold to or used by others.

    (C) "Residential area" means:

      (i) an area designated as a residential zoning district by a governing ordinance or code or an area in which the principal land use is for private residences;

      (ii) a subdivision for which a plat is recorded in the real property records of the county and that contains or is bounded by public streets or parts of public streets that are abutted by residential property occupying at least 75 percent of the front footage along the block face; or

      (iii) a subdivision a majority of the lots of which are subject to deed restrictions limiting the lots to residential use.

  (2) When the regulatory authority is a municipality, it shall by ordinance adopt standards for installing fire hydrants in residential areas in the municipality. These standards must, at a minimum, follow current AWWA standards pertaining to fire hydrants and the requirements of §290.44(e)(6) of this title.

  (3) When the regulatory authority is a municipality, it shall by ordinance adopt standards for maintaining sufficient water pressure for service to fire hydrants adequate to protect public safety in residential areas in the municipality. The standards specified in paragraph (4) of this subsection are the minimum acceptable standards.

  (4) A public utility shall deliver water to any fire hydrant connected to the public utility's water system located in a residential area so that the flow at the fire hydrant is at least 250 gallons per minute for a minimum period of two hours while maintaining a minimum pressure of 20 psi throughout the distribution system during emergencies such as fire fighting. That flow is in addition to the public utility's maximum daily demand for purposes other than firefighting.

  (5) When the regulatory authority is a municipality, it shall adopt the standards required by this subsection within one year of the effective date of this subsection or within one year of the date this subsection first applies to the municipality, whichever occurs later.

  (6) A public utility shall comply with the standards established by a municipality under both paragraphs (2) and (3) of this subsection within one year of the date the standards first apply to the public utility. If a municipality has failed to comply with the deadline required by paragraph (5) of this subsection, then a public utility shall comply with the standards specified in paragraphs (2) and (4) of this subsection within two years of the effective date of this subsection or within one year of the date this subsection first applies to the public utility, whichever occurs later.


Source Note: The provisions of this §290.46 adopted to be effective September 13, 2000, 25 TexReg 8880; amended to be effective May 16, 2002, 27 TexReg 4127; amended to be effective February 19, 2004, 29 TexReg 1373; amended to be effective January 9, 2008, 33 TexReg 198; amended to be effective October 16, 2008, 33 TexReg 8533; amended to be effective December 10, 2009, 34 TexReg 8744; amended to be effective June 10, 2010, 35 TexReg 4726

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