The Calaveras County Water District’s top priorities are to provide customers with safe, high quality and reliable drinking water that meets or exceeds state and federal standards, and the District is proud to have achieved these goals since 1946.
With water quality concerns widely reported in the state and national news, there’s no better time to remind customers how fortunate they are to have CCWD’s pure and safe water flowing to their taps.
“Our water quality is outstanding,” said Teresa Tanaka, director of operations for CCWD. “We are committed to producing safe and reliable drinking water for our customers.”
“I’m very happy with our water,” added Jesse Hampton, CCWD plant operations manager. “Our water treatment plant operators are members of our community who drink the water they produce. My kids drink this water.”
What many people don’t realize is that water treatment plant operators are personally responsible to follow state and federal regulations.
“All the operators are certified, and they must engage in continuing education to maintain their certifications” said Hampton, who was a long-time operator before being promoted to plant manager. “These are professionals. We take great pride in our treatment plants and produce the best water possible.”
Water treatment plant operators take daily water samples to ensure the water is within state and federal standards. Reports are submitted to the Division of Drinking water on a monthly basis. This state oversight, along with close communication between CCWD and the Division of Drinking Water, ensures that water quality meets or surpasses stringent California drinking water standards.
CCWD’s water is so pure that there are no problems with unwanted metals like lead or other contaminants. Learn more about CCWD’s water, by viewing the District’s water quality reports, which go all the way back to 2005. Conveniently view them on the District website – www.ccwd.org – or call (209) 754-3543 to request a hard copy.
Even with clean water in rivers and lakes fed by rain and snow, CCWD puts the water through a treatment process to ensure it is completely safe to drink. Here’s a brief summary of the process used at most of our treatment plants:
- Large electric pumps suck up water from rivers and lakes and transport it to water treatment plants. Suspended in this water are particles of dirt, organics and microbial life, which must be filtered out and disinfected.
- The first step is adding a polymer to the water, which cause small particles to bind into larger particles that are easier to filter out.
- Second, the water is pumped into an absorption clarifier that is filled with small plastic beads. Negatively charged particles in the water are removed because they stick to the positively charged pieces of plastic.
- Third, the water is pumped through a multimedia filter. This is made up of coal, sand and gravel. Any particles in the water that were not removed by the plastic beads, are removed out by this filter.
- The final step is to add chlorine to the water to disinfect it. The purified water is pumped into large holding tanks, ready to be delivered to customers.
- Note: CCWD does not use chloramines (a mixture of ammonia and chlorine) to treat water in any of its service areas.
Purifying the water is just the beginning. It must be delivered to customers via large systems of pipes and pumps that can run for miles. Many of CCWD’s distribution systems are aging, which increases maintenance costs.
“We prioritize infrastructure maintenance, so we can continue providing safe and reliable drinking water to our customers,” Tanaka said. “Some of our systems have reached the end of their useful lives and must be replaced. While this comes at a cost, it is absolutely crucial to the future of the District.”
To address these needs, the CCWD Board of Directors set aside funding for the Capital Improvement Program, which will systematically replace infrastructure throughout the District that needs it most. These repairs and replacements reduce interruptions in water service to customers and ensure the system will last well into the future.
Contact: Joel Metzger, PIO/Customer Relations Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org or (209) 754-3123