Water Quality Report 2016

Sabattus Sanitary District
Water Division
2016 Water Quality Report



The Sabattus Water Division is pleased to present our annual Water Quality Report.  This annual report is intended to provide you with important information about your drinking water.

Contents of this Report

The Safe Drinking Water Act mandates the State of Maine, along with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), to establish and enforce minimum drinking water standards. These standards set limits on certain biological, radioactive, organic and inorganic substances sometimes found in drinking water. The limits set on these standards are known as MCLs, Maximum Contaminant Levels.  Two types of standards have been established. Primary Standards set achievable levels of drinking water quality to protect your health. Secondary Standards provide guidelines regarding the taste, odor, color, and other aesthetic aspects of your drinking water, which do not present a health risk.  Listed on the following pages are the results of the System’s regular testing, which provide the test results for both Primary and Secondary Standards.  In 2016, substances tested met both Primary and Secondary Standards within the levels established by the EPA and the State of Maine.

The 2016 test results indicate the Sabattus Water Division meets state and federal requirements.

Water Quality & Health Information

We ensure that your water is safe through regular monitoring and testing of water quality. These tests are conducted by Maine State Health and Environmental Testing Laboratory and A&L Laboratory of Auburn, certified testing laboratories. This report shows a comprehensive summary of the laboratory test results for the constituents we regularly monitor in your water supply. Responsibility for maintaining water quality resides with our staff of certified water treatment plant operators, licensed by the State of Maine Department of Human Services.

All drinking water, including bottled water, may reasonably be expected to contain at least small amounts of some contaminants.  The presence of contaminants does not necessarily indicate that water poses a health risk. Contaminants that may be present in source water include:

  • Microbial contaminants, such as viruses and bacteria, which may come from sewage treatment plants, septic systems, agricultural livestock operations, and wildlife.
  • Inorganic contaminants, such as salts and metals, which can be naturally occurring or result from urban storm water runoff, industrial or domestic wastewater discharges, oil and gas production, mining, or farming.
  • Pesticides and Herbicides, which may come from a variety of sources such as agriculture, urban storm water runoff, and residential uses.
  • Organic chemical contaminants, including synthetic and volatile organic chemicals, which are by-products of industrial processes and petroleum production and can also come from gas stations, urban runoff, and septic systems.
  • Radioactive Contaminants, which can be naturally occurring or be the result of oil and gas production and mining activities.

However, some people may be more vulnerable to contaminants in drinking water than the general population.  Immuno-compromised persons such as persons with cancer undergoing chemotherapy, persons who have undergone organ transplants, people with HIV/AIDS or other immune system disorders, some elderly, and infants can be particularly at risk from infections.  These people should seek some advice about drinking water from their health care providers.  The EPA/CDC has guidelines on the appropriate means to lessen the risk of infection by Cryptosporidium and other microbial contaminants. More information about waterborne contaminants and potential health effects can be obtained by calling the Safe Drinking Water Hotline at (1-800-426-4791).

The Sabattus Water Division has been granted a variance to do Lead and Copper testing at a reduced level and once every three years because the results have been excellent, with none of our samples over the limit.

A 2014 waiver was granted for synthetic organics, allowing reduced testing. This is the result of past synthetic organic test results and participation in a wellhead protection program. 

Testing for parameters required by the state was performed and all results were well below the states limits. 

Water Supply / Source Information

The Sabattus Water Division uses ground water as its water source.  There are two wells, one located at Riley Road and one at Marsh Road in Sabattus. The wells are 12-inch gravel wells with 40 ft of casing and 20 feet of screen for a total depth of 60 feet.  There is some calcium in our water that a high temperature on boilers will aggravate.  Recommended temperature for boilers is a low of 140 to a high of 180 in winter and a low of 120 to a high of 160 in summer.  Our water hardness is 120.  While your drinking water meets EPA’s standard for arsenic, it does contain low levels of arsenic.  EPA’s standard balances the current understanding of arsenic’s possible health effects against the costs of removing arsenic from drinking water.  EPA continues to research the health effects of low levels of arsenic, which is a mineral known to cause cancer in humans at high concentrations and is linked to other health effects such as skin damage and circulatory problems.

Source Water Assessment Program

Sources of drinking water include rivers, lakes, ponds, and wells. As water flows either on the surface or through the ground, it dissolves naturally occurring minerals and radioactive material and can accumulate substances resulting from human and animal activity. The Maine Drinking Water Program (DWP) has evaluated all public water supplies as part of the Source Water Protection Program. The assessments included geology, hydrology, land uses, water testing information, and the extent of land ownership or protection by local ordinance to see how likely our drinking water source is being contaminated by human activities in the future. Assessment results are available at public water suppliers, town offices, and the DWP.  For more information on the SWAP, you may contact the DWP at telephone (207)287-2070.

Water Systems Data

Your water supply and distribution system includes over eight miles of water main. The system served 615 customers in 2016 and provides fire protection service through 59 hydrants. In the last twelve months, we have produced and delivered 53,700,000 gallons of water. That is an average of approximately 153,000 gallons each day. The system also maintains 450,000 gallons in our storage tank.

This storage allows us to meet peak system demand periods and maintain an adequate supply during fire fighting activities. We treat the water with Sodium Hypochlorite if needed; otherwise, our water is free from chemicals. There is no fluoride added to our water supply.

Highlights of 2016

The District had no violations occurring in 2016. The District has been working on a new G.I.S. mapping system that allows quick access to locate water mains, gate valves, hydrants and eventually individual curb stops for each home.

Lead and Copper Dangers

If present, elevated levels of lead can cause serious health problems, especially for pregnant women and young children. Lead in drinking water is primarily from materials and components associated with service lines and home plumbing. Sabattus Sanitary District Water Division is responsible for providing high quality drinking water, but cannot control the variety of materials used in plumbing components. When your water has been sitting for several hours, you can minimize the potential for lead exposure by flushing your tap for 30 seconds to 2 minutes before using water for drinking or cooking. If you are concerned about lead in your water, you may wish to have your water tested. Information on lead in drinking water, testing methods, and steps you can take to minimize exposure is available from the Safe Drinking Water Hotline or at https://www.epa.gov/ground-water-and-drinking-water/basic-information-ab...

Other Important Information

If you have any questions about your water quality, the information contained in this report, or your water service in general, please call us during normal business hours.  Board of Trustee Meetings, open to the public, is typically held the second Monday of the month at 5:00 PM at the Sanitary District office, 22 Lisbon Road.  You may also direct questions to the Maine Department of Human Services Drinking Water Program at (207) 287-2070 or the Environmental Protection Agency's Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 1-800-426-4791.

Primary Drinking Water Standards 2016

 Maximum ContaminantMaximum ContaminantActualActual
 Level GoalLevelTest Results Test Results 
ParameterMCLGMCL(Highest or Average, if appl.)(Range)
Clarity *Sample date: 5-1-14    
Turbidity (NTU) (12) (TT) n/a5.0<0.6 
Total Coliform bacteria (<40 samples)010 
     % of samples positive (>40 samples)05.00 
Organic Chemicals* *Sample date: 4-22-14    
Benzene (ppb)05NONE DETECTED 
Carbon Tetrachloride (ppb)05NONE DETECTED 
Chlorobenzene (ppb)100100NONE DETECTED 
Dichlorobenzene (p-) (ppb)7575NONE DETECTED 
Dichlorobenzene o- (Ortho-) (ppb)600600NONE DETECTED 
Dichloroethane (1,2-) (ppb)05NONE DETECTED 
Dichloroethylene (1,1-) (ppb)77NONE DETECTED 
Dichloroethylene (Cis-1,2-) (ppb)7070NONE DETECTED 
Dichloroethylene (Trans-1,2-) (ppb)100100NONE DETECTED 
Dichloromethane05NONE DETECTED 
Dichloropropane (1,2-) (ppb)05NONE DETECTED 
Ethylbenzene (ppb)700700NONE DETECTED 
Methyl-Tertiary-Butyl-Ether (MTBE)  (13) (ppb)3535NONE DETECTED 
Styrene (ppb)100100NONE DETECTED 
Tetrachloroethylene (PCE) ppb05NONE DETECTED 
Toluene (ppm)11NONE DETECTED 
Total Trihalomethanes (TTHMs) (8) (ppb)080NONE DETECTED 
Trichlorobenzene (1,2,4) (ppb)7070NONE DETECTED 
Trchloroethane (1,1,1-) (TCA) (ppb)200200NONE DETECTED 
Trichloroethane (1,1,2-) (ppb)35NONE DETECTED 
Trichloroethylene (TCE) (ppb)05NONE DETECTED 
Vinyl Chloride (ppb)02NONE DETECTED 
Xylenes (ppm)1010NONE DETECTED 
Maximum Contaminant Level Goal (MCLG) established by EPA:  The level of a contaminant in drinking water below which there is no known or expected risk to health.
This is not the acceptable regulatory compliance limit   
Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL):  The highest level of a contaminant that is  allowed in the drinking water.  This is used to determine compliance
Variance of Waiver:  State or U.S. EPA permission not to meet MCL or treatment technique under certain conditions (e.g. waiver to filtration).
Treatment Technique (TT):  A required process intended to reduce the level of a contaminant in drinking water (e.g. turbidity). 
Action Level (AL):  The concentration of a contaminant which, if exceeded, triggers treatment or other requirements which a water system must follow (e.g. lead, copper).
Concentrations:  In this report, most of the quantities are expressed as  ppm, ppb, ppt and pCi/l.  
These are measure of organics, inorganics or radiation activity per a fixed amount of water.  
Parts per Million (ppm):  Is the equivalent of one drop of chemical per every 10 gallons.  
Parts per Billion (ppb):  Is the equivalent of one drop of chemical per every 10,000 gallons.  
Parts per Trillion (ppt):  Is the equivalent of one drop of chemical per every 10,000,000 gallons.  
Picocurries per Liter (pCi/l):  Is a measure of the amount of naturally occuring radiation per liter of water. 
Nephelometric Turbidity Units (NTU):  Turbidity Units are the measurement of cloudiness in the water. 
Primary Drinking Water Standards
 Maximum ContaminantMaximum ContaminantActualActual
 Level GoalLevelTest Results Test Results 
ParameterMCLG MCL(Highest or Average, if appl.)(Range)
Inorganic Chemicals  *sample date: 5-1-14    
Antimony (ppb)06<0.5 ppb 
Arsenic  (ppb)0103.6 ppb 
Barium (ppm)220.0081 
Beryllium (ppb)44<0.5 ppb 
Cadmium (ppb)553<0.5 
Calcium (ppm)  46 ppm 
Chromium (ppm)100100  1.6 ppb 
Copper (7) (ppm) *sample date: 8-5-14AL = 1.3AL = 1.30.160 ppm 
Fluoride  (6) (ppm)44<0.1 ppm 
Lead (7) (ppb) *sample date: 8-5-140AL = 155.20 ppb 
Mercury (ppb)22<0.05 ppb 
Nitrate (ppm)1010  3 
Nitrite (ppm)11<0.05 ppm 
Selenium (ppm)5050<0.002 ppm 
Thallium (ppm)0.52< .0005 ppm 
Gross Alpha Activity  (9) (pCi/l) *sample date: 5-5-140153.26 
Radium 226/228 (Combined) (pCi/l)  Rad-228 4/17/12 05  .421 pCi/L 
Uranium (10)  5/1/140304.9ppb 
Radon (10)  3/25/2004040001250 pcl.l 
Cryptosporidium/Giardia  (11)00NONE DETECTED 
Water Hardness *sample date:   5/1/14    130 mg/L 
*Sample date: 5-1-14Secondary Drinking Water Standards   
Chemical Parameters (ppm)    
Chloride (ppm)25025018 ppm 
Copper (ppm) ppm 
Foaming Agents (MBAS)0.50.5NONE DETECTED 
Iron (ppm) ppm 
Manganese (ppm)0.050.05<0.0005 ppm 
Silver (ppm)0.10.1< .0005 ppm 
Sulfate25025019 ppm 
Total Dissolved Solids500500102.8 
Zinc5.05.0<0.002 ppm 
Physical Parameters    
Color (units)15.015.0< 5 
(1) Dibromochloropropane - State wide waiver granted to Maine   
(2) Dioxin/Glyphosate - State wide waiver granted to Maine   
(3) Diquat/Endothall - Testing only required if potato growing occurs in watershed.  
(4) Ethylene Dibromide - Testing only required for ground water systems. State wide waiver for surface water systems in Maine.
(5) Fluoride - Currently under review by EPA    
(6) Copper/Lead action levels are measured at consumer's tap.  90% of tests in water system must be equal to or below action level
(7) Total Trihalomethanes - Sum of Bromodichloromethane, Bromoform, Chlorodibromomethane,  
      and Chloroform, can not exceed 100 ppb.    
(8) Gross Alpha - Action level over 5pCi/l requires testing for Radium 226/228. Action level over 15pCi/l requires testing for Uranium
(90) Uranium/Radon - Currently under review by EPA   
(10) Cryptosporidium, Giardia, Legionella - Surface Waters Only, Ground waters required to test or exempt before 1999. 
(11) Turbidity - Surface waters only; 1.49 NTU for Slow Sand or AFT   
        Turbidity (continued)  0.549 NTU for Conventional or Direct Filtration; 5.0 ntu for unfiltered surface water systems. 
(12) MTBE - State only MCL. Set by DHE under State Statute to be promulgated before 2/98.  
(13) MFL is "Million Fibers per Liter"    
(14)* All contaminants screened were below minimum detection level