February 25, 2004 -- Vol. 5, No. 8
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This week's NEWS

When does a cross-connection become a backflow incident? Not just when the valve is opened! Maybe humans can line up with their Rhesus relatives for pesticide testing if panel's recommendations prevail... and whether health officer's human bathing tests in Maui will be double-blind probably depends on "clothing optional" being specified. EPA joins DC utility in hot water over lead issue. Increase in Maryland groundwater radioactivity still a mystery. Water groups continue full-court press to keep MTBE protective clause out of any federal legislation.

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Federal Update State Updates Perchlorate
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Water Treatment Water-Related Research Fluoridation Atrazine
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Microbiological Cross-Connection Control
  • Ohio Goodyear plant officials concerned over cross connection contamination
    (Evening Leader, February 12)
    Commentary: As described, the valved connection between the potable water system and a cooling water system fits the classic definition of a "cross connection." In this case, it apparently took a deliberate or inadvertent opening of the valve to allow "backflow" to occur. (But was the valve always "leak-proof"?) An interesting facet is that the cooling water contamination manifested itself as a positive coliform test; since cooling water systems often have potent corrosion and algae inhibitors added, it might be surprising to see the organisms present. Color, odor, off-tastes might be more likely indicators. There is no mention of a backflow prevention device installed on the service connection to the Goodyear plant...?

  • The American Backflow Prevention Association's annual conference will be May 9-12 in Long Beach, CA

Flavor Profile Analysis: An Analytical Method that Every Water Utility and Lab Should Have Available

Quality services that ensure safe drinking water -- McGuire Environmental Consultants, Inc. Consumer acceptance of drinking water is crucial to the success of anyone serving drinking water customers. Dr. McGuire, founder of McGuire Environmental Consultants, Inc. (MEC) led the way in adapting the Flavor Profile Analysis (FPA) method to the analysis of drinking water in 1981, and since that time it has become the "gold standard" for assessing the taste and odor characteristics of drinking water.

McGuire Environmental Consultants, Inc. is a specialty firm whose goal is to help utilities produce safe drinking water. In addition to Flavor Profile Analysis, we provide a wide range of services to the municipal and private water utility market, especially in the areas of water quality and water treatment.

For more information on these services, please contact Jim Leserman at either jleserman@mcguireinc.com or visit mcguireinc.com/fpa.

Water Quality Tasting Arsenic
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MTBE Lead Corrosion Control
  • Maui residents complain of skin problems from corrosion inhibitor
    (Honolulu Star Bulletin, February 23)
    Commentary: Complaints may be related to the county's switch from zinc orthophosphate to phosphoric acid. The change was made to control water-corrosivity, reduce the amount of lead leaching and enable the water utility to come into compliance with SDWA lead requirements. The chief health officer thinks something is amiss: he is recruiting volunteers to take baths for him (not with him!), some in the phosphoric acid-treated water, others in untreated water.

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Radionuclides Water Contamination
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