Water Lines
Safe
Dun king L
Water H4tlii\e
March 2002
Monthly Report
SDW Hotline Report
In This Issue
What's New?	

	1
Security Qs & As	

	1
Did You Know?	

	1
Frequently Asked Qs & As	
	2
Monthly Trends	

	3
Hotline Stats	

	4
Top Ten Topics

Questions
Percent of
Topic
(phone &
Total*

email)
Questions
Tap Water Testing
242**
10
Local Drinking Water
206
8
Quality


Household Wells
137
5
Lead
135
5
Other DW
130
5
Background


Other EPA
120
5
Arsenic
101
4
Radon
101
4
Home Water
99
4
Treatment Units


Consumer
93
4
Confidence Report
*A total of 2,543 questions were answered by
the Hotline (via telephone and email) in March
2002.
**Citizens who obtain their drinking water from
private household wells asked 29% of the tap
water testing questions.
Published Monthly
See past reports at
http://intranet.epa.gov/ow/hotline
Safe Drinking Water Hotline: National
Toll-free No.: (800) 426-4791 or
(877) EPAWATER
For More Information Contact:
Harriet Hubbard, EPA Project Officer
(202) 564-4621
Operated by Booz Allen Hamilton
Under Contract #GS-10F-0090J
What's New
New Documents:
	Draft Implementation Guidance
for the Arsenic Rule and
Clarifications to Compliance and
New Source Contaminants
Monitoring, March 2002, is now
available at
htt p ://www. e pa. q o v/safewate r/a rs
enic.html
	Drinking Water from Household
Wells, January 2002, EPA816-K-
02-003, is now available at
htt p ://www. e pa. q o v/safewate r/co
nsumer/wells/household wells.p
df
	Report to Congress: Small
System Arsenic Implementation
Issues, March 2002, EPA815-R-
02-003, is now available at
htt p ://www. e pa. g o v/safewate r/a rs
enic.html.
Add This to Your Calendar:
	EPA is soliciting grant
applications from large publicly
owned systems through a
Request for Applications.
Awardees will receive up to
$115,000 to develop a
vulnerability assessment (VA),
emergency response/operating
plan, security enhancements
plans and designs, or a
combination of these efforts.
Proposals are due April 29, 2002.
Information can be found at
htt p ://www. e pa. q o v/safewate r/se
curitv/index.html.
 The Safe Drinking Water Hotline
is now taking registrations for the
Surface Water Rule Treatment
Rules Training Workshop
(including the newly promulgated
Long Term I Enhanced Surface
Water Treatment Rule and Filter
Backwash Recycling Rule). The
workshop will address how the
Surface Water Rules are
interrelated by presenting the
requirements by treatment
technology. These workshops
are open to all regions, tribes,
states, and training and technical
assistance providers. Training
dates: May 16-17 Chicago; May
29-30 Boston; June 1-12 Denver;
August 13-14 TBD.
Security Qs & As
Q: Where can public water systems
interested in applying for the
Vulnerability Assessment grants
locate the application material?
A: All Vulnerability Assessment grant
application materials are available
on the Office of Groundwater and
Drinking Water Web site at:
http://www.epa.gov/safewater/sec
uritv/index.html.
Did You Know?
If a 55 gallon drum of water represented the total supply of water on the planet then:
	The oceans would be represented by 53 gallons, 1 quart, 1 pint, and 12 ounces;
	The icecaps and glaciers would represent 1 gallon, and 12 ounces;
	The atmosphere would contribute 1 pint and 4.5 ounces;
	Groundwater would add up to 1 quart, and 11.4 ounces;
	Freshwater lakes would represent V2 ounce;
	Inland seas and saline lakes would add up to over 1/3 of an ounce;
	Soil moisture and vadose water would total to about % of an ounce;
	The rivers of the world would only add up to 1/100 of an ounce (less than one-
millionth of the water on the planet.

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March 2002
Frequently Asked Qs & As
Q: Does the temperature of drinking water contribute to
the amount of lead that it contains? Which type of water
should be used for cooking and drinking?
A: According to the public information language
specified in 40 CFR 141,85(a)(1)(iv)(B)(2), people
should try not to cook with or drink water from the hot
water tap. Hot water can dissolve more lead more
quickly than cold water.
Q: What does EPA set as a safe level for MTBE?
A: There is no primary drinking water standard for
methyl tertiary- butyl ether (MTBE). In 1997, EPA
published an Advisory document on methyl tertiary-butyl
ether (Drinking Water Advisory: Consumer Acceptability
Advice and Health Effects Analysis on Methyl Tertiary-
Butyl Ether, Environmental Protection Agency Office of
Water, 1997). This non-regulatory document
recommends keeping levels at a range of 20 to 40 parts
per billion (ppb) or below. At this level, MTBE will
probably not generate an odor or taste problem and
there is little likelihood that in this range negative
resulting health effects will occur. The December 3,
2001, Unified Agenda notes a Notice of Proposed Rule
proposing a secondary standard for MTBE that will
provide guidance for taste and odor acceptability and to
protect the public welfare. The proposed rule making is
expected to be published in August of 2002.
Q: How can a list of "significant non-compliance" (SNC)
data for public water systems be generated?
A: According to Sue Pohedra of EPA, the Office of
Enforcement and Compliance Assurance is the overseer
of the SNC data. Requestors of SNC list information
have to go through Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).
People may request national lists via FOIA fax at 202-
260-4499 or may send their requests to the Freedom of
Information Office, U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency, Ariel Rios Building, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave.,
NW20460 (mail code 1105A).
Q: Where can I find the standard rounding procedures or
significant figure use conventions when judging
compliance with an MCL?
A: Laboratories should observe conventions concerning
proper use of significant figures in making calculations to
avoid the appearance that the data are more precise
than the method allows. Conventions for the use of
significant digits and proper rounding of numbers are
discussed in detail in the EPA publication: Analytical
Quality Control in Water and Wastewater Laboratories
(EPA-600/4-79-019) and in Standard Methods for
Examination of Water and Wastewater (Section 1050 B
in the 18th Edition).
Q: My facility treats water for processing purposes and
employees use this water to shower. The definition of
Public Water System includes the words "human
consumption." Can showering be considered "human
consumption?"
A: On February 26, 1988, the United States District
Court settled the U.S. v. Midway Heights case in part by
claiming "human consumption includes drinking, bathing,
showering, cooking, dishwashing, and maintaining oral
hygiene" EPA Water supply guidance memo H22,
August 1989. This guidance is available at:
http://www.e pa ,q ov/safewater/wsq/wsq H22. pdf.
Q: For UCMR sampling, the regulations in 40 CFR
141,35(a)(v)(ii)(c) require samples to be taken at the
entry point to the distribution system. Does this mean
before or after treatment?
A: As specified in footnote f of Table 1 in 40 CFR
141.40, entry points to the distribution system (EPTDS)
are after treatment.
Q: What is the status of sodium as a regulated
contaminant?
A: At this time, sodium is not a regulated contaminant.
Sodium is presently included on the Contaminant
Candidate List. The notice of preliminary regulatory
determination has not been published.
Q: Why did EPA promulgate a combined nitrate / nitrite
MCL?
A: EPA set a maximum contaminant level for combined
nitrate and nitrite to account for the possible additive
toxicity of these two chemicals and also to protect
against the deterioration of the drinking water quality,
since the presence of nitrite in water is indicative of
water contaminated with sewage (54 FR 22062, 22077;
May 22, 1989).
Q: Under the Public Notification Rule (PNR), must a
system designated as a consecutive water system do
public notification in the event of a violation by the
wholesale system?
A: Yes. According to 40 CFR 141.201(c)(1), "Each
public water system must provide public notice to
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March 2002
Hotline Statistics
persons served by the water system. Public water
systems that sell or otherwise provide drinking water to
other public water systems (i.e., to consecutive systems)
are required to give public notice to the owner or
operator of the consecutive system; the consecutive
system is responsible for providing public notice to the
persons it serves."
Q: Is there a list of states that have reciprocity with other
states under the Operator Certification Program?
A: According to Jenny Jacobs of EPA's OGWDW, there
is currently not a list of states that offer reciprocity under
the Operator Certification Program.
Corrections
Q: What is the applicability of the proposed Ground
Water Rule?
A: The requirements of the proposed Ground Water
Rule would apply to: (1) all public water systems served
solely be ground water, and (2) public water systems
that distribute ground water that is not treated to a 4-log
inactivation or removal of viruses. Systems supplied by
ground water under the direct influence of surface water
would not be regulated under this rule as proposed.
[This represents a correction to a Q&A published in the
January 2002 Monthly Report]
Q: What is the effective date and compliance date for
the Public Notification Rule revisions promulgated on
May 4, 2000?
A: The revised regulations (under 40 CFR Part 141,
Subpart Q) were effective on June 5, 2000. Public water
systems in primacy states must comply with the rule
beginning May 6, 2002, (regardless of whether the
primacy state has adopted and EPA has approved the
public notification rule primacy revision), unless a
primacy state chooses to adopt the new regulations
earlier. Public water systems where EPA directly
implements the drinking water program (i.e., Wyoming,
Washington, D.C., and Tribal lands) were required to
comply with the new regulation on October 31, 2000.
[This represents a correction to a Q&A published in the
February 2002 Monthly Report]
Monthly Trends
According to the technical fact sheet on
the final rule for arsenic, "compared to
the rest of the United States, the
Western states have more systems with
arsenic levels greater than 10 |jg/L." Is
this reflected in a greater percentage of
arsenic questions posed to the Hotline
from the western states (AK, AZ, CA, HI,
ID, NV, OR, UT, and WA), compared to
the national percentage? [The grouping
of Western states for this analysis is
based on the National Arsenic
Occurrence Survey (NAOS) Database Western region.] Arsenic questions as a percentage of
total question topics asked by people in the Western states is just above the national
percentage but basically mimics the national trend. The exception was for the month of
February, where the spike in percentage can be attributed to a large number of calls from
people in Washington regarding registration for a forthcoming arsenic training program in
Seattle.
16
14
12
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D) 10
RS
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March 2002
Monthly Summary of
Hotline Service
Total number of calls answered
1,783
Total number of emails received
348
Average wait time (in seconds)
0:16
Percent of calls satisfied immediately
96.8%
Percent of all calls answered in < 1 min
93.5%
Percent of callbacks answered in 5 days
100%
Percent of emails answered in 5 days
100%
Number of Times Callers Listened to

Recorded Message About Local DW Quality
970
Number of Times Callers Listened to

Recorded Message About Arsenic Rule
96
Comparison to Previous Year

Calls
Emails
March 2002
1,783
348
March 2001
3,024
547
Top Ten Referrals
Customer Profiles
Customer
Calls
Emails
Analytical Laboratories
52
4
Citizen - Private Well
279
47
Citizen - PWS
823
125
Consultants/lndustry/Trade (DW)
157
26
Consultants/lndustry/Trade (Other)
84
31
Environmental Groups
12
0
EPA
36
5
Other Federal Agency
15
5
Government, Local
15
3
Government, State
48
11
Government, Tribal
0
0
Spanish Speaking
0
0
International
4
13
Media
5
2
Medical Professional
6
2
Public Water System
178
10
Schools/University
49
58
Other
20
6
TOTALS
1,783
348
Daily Call Data


Total Calls
Average Wait Time

Number of
Referrals
Percent of

Answered
mm:sec
Inquiry Referred to:
Total*
1-Mar
88
00:15
Referrals
4-Mar
102
00:14
1. EPA Internet
352
19%
5-Mar
86
00:16
2. State Lab Certification
216
12%
6-Mar
82
00:11
3. State PWSS
166
9%
7-Mar
79
00:10
4. NSF/WQA/UL
151
8%
8-Mar
69
00:10
5. Local Water System
139
7%
11-Mar
113
00:09
6. Local Public Health
99
5%
12-Mar
100
00:20
7. Non-EPA Internet
88
5%
13-Mar
87
00:17
8. Other Hotlines
76
4%
14-Mar
84
00:28
9. AGWT/WSC
73
4%
15-Mar
82
00:34
10. Regional Offices
70
4%
18-Mar
100
00:27
*1,860 total referrals to other
resources, agencies, and
19-Mar
99
00:19
organizations were provided by the Hotline in
March 2002.
20-Mar
72
00:13



21-Mar
86
00:17



22-Mar
71
00:11



25-Mar
70
00:08



26-Mar
87
00:13



27-Mar
96
00:22



28-Mar
71
00:12



29-Mar
59
00:09



TOTALS
1,783
00:16
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March 2002
Topic Categories
Category
Calls
Emails
Microbials/Disinfection Byproducts
Chlorine
17
7
Coliforms
37
1
Cryptosporidium
21
1
Disinfection/Disinfection


Byproducts (Other)
17
7
Disinfection - Home Water
17
4
Other Microbials
16
2
Surface Water Treatment (SWTR,


ESWTR, LT1FBR)
38
9
Trihalomethane (THM)
14
6
Inorganic Chemicals (IOC)/Synthetic
Organic Chemicals (SOC)
Arsenic
95
6
Fluoride
16
7
Methyl-ferf/ary-butyl-ether (MTBE)
17
3
Perchlorate
6
3
Phase I, II & V
58
12
Sodium Monitoring
7
1
Sulfate
2
3
Lead and Copper
Copper
24
2
Lead
126
9
Lead Contamination Control Act


(LCCA)/Lead Ban
6
2
Radionuclides
Radionuclides (Other)
21
5
Radionuclides (Radon)
93
8
Secondary DW Regulations
Secondary DW Regulations
43
14
SDWA Background/Overview
Definitions & Applicability
36
4
MCL List
61
13
Other Background
96
34
SDWA
35
5
Hotline Statistics
Category
Calls
Emails
Water on Tap
24
4
Other DW Regulations
Analytical Methods (DW)
42
10
Contaminant Candidate List/


Drinking Water Priority List
4
4
Consumer Confidence Report (DW)
87
6
DW Primacy (PWS)
5
0
Operator (PWS) Certification
7
1
Public Notification (PWS)
23
0
State Revolving Fund (DW)
8
2
Unregulated Contaminant
Monitoring Rule (UCMR)
74
6
Other Drinking Water
Additives Program
4
3
Bottled Water
52
6
Complaints about PWS
26
7
Compliance & Enforcement
(PWS)
3
0
Home Water Treatment Units
75
24
Infrastructure/Cap. Development
10
1
Local DW Quality
175
31
Tap Water Testing
232
10
Treatment/BATs (DW)
25
22
Drinking Water Source Protection
Ground Water Rule
2
0
Sole Source Aquifer
0
1
Source Water/Wellhead Protect.
17
4
UIC Program
13
2
Out of Purview
Household Wells
120
17
Non-Environmental
29
30
Non-EPA Environmental
52
36
Other EPA (Programs)
94
26
TOTALS
2,122
421
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SAFE DRINKING WATER HOTLINE MONTHLY REPORT
March 2002
Appendix A: Federal Register Summaries
Proposed Rules
"Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Regulation: Approval of Analytical Method for
Aeromonas; National Primary and Secondary Drinking Water Regulations: Approval of
Analytical Methods for Chemical and Microbiological Contaminants"
March 7, 2002 (67 FR 10532)
EPA proposes the analytical method and an associated Minimum Reporting Level (MRL) for
the analysis of Aeromonas to support the Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Regulation's List
2 monitoring. Additionally, EPA proposes to approve EPA Method 515.4 to support previously
required NPDWR compliance monitoring for 2,4-D (as acid, salts and esters), 2,4,5-TP (Silvex),
dinoseb, pentachlorophenol, picloram and dalapon, and USEPA Method 531.2 to support
previously required NPDWR monitoring for carbofuran and oxamyl. Finally, EPA proposes to
approve eight additional industry developed analytical methods to support previously required
NPDWR compliance monitoring.
"Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Regulation for Public Water Systems;
Establishment of Reporting Date"
March 12, 2002 (67 FR 11071)
This action proposes to establish August 9, 2002, as a new, later date by which large public
water systems serving more than 10,000 persons must report all contaminant monitoring
laboratory results they receive before May 13, 2002, for the UCMR monitoring program.
Monitoring results received on or after May 13, 2002, would have to be reported within 30 days
following the month in which laboratory results are received, as specified in the current
regulation for this program.
Final Rules
"Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Regulation for Public Water Systems; Establishing
of Reporting Date"
March 12, 2002 (67 FR 11043)
Today's direct final rule establishes August 9, 2002, as a new, later date by which large water
systems serving more than 100,000 persons must report all contaminant monitoring results they
receive before May 13, 2002, for the UCMR monitoring program. Monitoring results received
on or after May 13, 2002, must be reported within 30 days following the month in which
laboratory results are received, as specified in the current regulation for this program.
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Notices
"Laboratory Quality Assurance Evaluation Program for Analysis of Cryptosporidium
Under the Safe Drinking Water Act; Agency Information Collection: Proposed
Collection; Comment Request"
March 4, 2002 (67 FR 9731)
Today's notice invites comment on EPA's proposed Laboratory Quality Assurance Evaluation
Program for Analysis of Cryptosporidium under the Safe Drinking Water Act (Lab QA Program)
(Section I). EPA also plans to submit to OMB for review and approval an ICR associated with
information collections under the proposed Lab QA Program (Section II). EPA is requesting
comments on specific aspects of the proposed Lab QA Program and the ICR. Finally, EPA
solicits comments on its intention to seek an emergency clearance from OMB to begin collecting
data from laboratories that are interested in participating in the Lab QA Program prior to OMB's
final approval of the ICR.
"Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment
Request; Operator Certification Guidelines and Operator Certification Expense
Reimbursement Grants Program"
March 7, 2002 (67 FR 10404)
In compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), this notice
announces that the following ICR has been forwarded to OMB for review and approval:
Operator Certification Guidelines and Operator Certification Expense Reimbursement Grants
Program, OMB Control Number 2040-0236 (expiration date February 28, 2002).
"Public Water System Supervision Program Revision for the State of Arkansas"
March 11, 2002 (67 FR 10915)
Notice is hereby given that the State of Arkansas is revising its approved Public Water System
Supervision Program. Arkansas has adopted an Interim Enhanced Surface Water Treatment
Rule to improve control of microbial pathogens in drinking water, including specifically the
protozoan Cryptosporidium, and a Stage 1 Disinfectant/Disinfection Byproducts Rule, setting
new requirements to limit the formation of chemical disinfectant byproducts in drinking water.
EPA has determined that these revisions are no less stringent than the corresponding federal
regulations. Therefore, EPA intends to approve these program revisions.
"Consent Decree Under Safe Drinking Water Act; United States v. Arturo C. Muro and
Manuela B. Muro"
March 11, 2002 (67 FR 10931)
"Public Water System Supervision Program Revision for the State of Florida"
March 21, 2002 (67 FR 13145)
Notice is hereby given that the State of Florida is revising its approved Public Water System
Supervision Program. Florida has adopted drinking water regulations for Lead and Copper and
the definition of a Public Water System. EPA has determined that these sets of revisions are no
less stringent than the corresponding Federal regulations. Therefore, EPA intends to approve
this State program revision.
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"Arsenic Treatment Demonstrations"
March 28, 2002 (67 FR 14951)
EPA plans to conduct a demonstration program on the treatment (reduction and/or removal) of
arsenic in drinking water. EPA recently promulgated a standard that limits arsenic
concentrations in drinking water to 10 ug/1. Through this demonstration program EPA intends to
identify and evaluate the ability of commercially available technologies and engineering or other
approaches to cost effectively meet the new standard in small water systems (<10,000
customers). Through this notice, EPA is inviting the public at large, governmental and
regulatory agencies, public health agencies, and drinking water utilities to identify small water
utilities that may be interested in hosting a demonstration at their facility. Such utilities should
be those which will require treatment to comply with the new arsenic standard.
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SAFE DRINKING WATER HOTLINE MONTHLY REPORT
March 2002
Appendix B: Contract Management Information
Pending and Completed Actions
A.	Three senior Hotline Information Specialists attended the American Water Works
Association's "Basics of Waterborne Pathogens" satellite teleconference on March 14th in
Fairfax Virginia.
B.	The Safe Drinking Water Hotline Staff continues taking registrations for regional arsenic
training workshops and began accepting registrations for regional SWTR training.
C.	Two senior Hotline Information Specialists attended a briefing by the US Geological Survey
on "Microbial Occurrence in Public Water Supply Wells" on March 13, 2002.
Report on Internet Activities
The OGWDW Web site announcing EPA's Laboratory Quality Assurance Evaluation Program
for Analysis of Cryptosporidium, http://www.epa.gov/safewater/lt2/cla int.html lists May 1,
2002 as the deadline for comments. However, the Federal Register Notice (67 FR 9731) for this
proposal lists May 3, 2002, as the deadline for comments.
The OGWDW Web site, http://www.epa.gov/safewater/openc.html announcing the proposed
rule titled Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Regulation: Approval of Analytical Methodfor
Aeromonas; National Primary and Secondary Drinking Water Regulations: Approval of
Analytical Methods for Chemical and Microbiological Contaminants contains a link to the
proposed rule. This link only responds with an error message.
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