EPA orders Havasu Water Co. to fix safe drinking water violations

Location map: Chemehuevi Indian Reservation (served by Havasu Water Company)
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  • EPA cites Havasu Water Company for multiple violations of the Safe Drinking Water Act.
  • Violations include exceeding the maximum allowable level for total trihalomethanes.
  • Privately-owned community water system serves approximately 361 people on the Chemehuevi Indian Reservation.
  • Havasu Water Company must develop a plan to address violations and come into compliance.

June 11, 2024 — In late May, The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a Unilateral Administrative Order to the Havasu Water Company, requiring the company to take corrective action to address violations of the Safe Drinking Water Act. The violations include exceeding the maximum allowable level for total trihalomethanes (TTHMs).  TTHMs are byproducts formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water and can pose health risks at elevated levels.

EPA Cites Multiple Violations.

In addition to the TTHM violation, the EPA cited the Havasu Water Company for failing to have qualified personnel operate the water system, failing to provide required public notifications, failing to correct significant deficiencies in the system, and failing to report appropriate surface water treatment data.

The Havasu Water Company is a privately-owned community water system serving approximately 361 people on the Chemehuevi Indian Reservation in California.

“A top priority under EPA’s public health mission is to ensure that the drinking water of all of our communities – no matter how big or small, or wealthy or disadvantaged – is safe and reliable,” said EPA Pacific Southwest Regional Administrator Martha GuzmanOpens in a new tab.. “We will continue to fully utilize our authority to make sure that safe drinking water standards are met.”

Havasu Water Company Ordered to Develop Corrective Action Plan.

The Unilateral Administrative Order requires the Havasu Water Company to develop a plan to comply with the Safe Drinking Water Act, including meeting the maximum contaminant level for TTHMs. The company must also retain a certified operator, issue required public notices, address remaining system deficiencies, and submit timely surface water treatment data.

Image:

Location map, Chemehuevi Indian Reservation in the Lower Colorado River ValleyOpens in a new tab., eastern San Bernardino County, Southern California.  Author, Cenglish.  Released under the Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication.

Deborah

Since 1995, Deborah has owned and operated LegalTech LLC with a focus on water rights. Before moving to Arizona in 1986, she worked as a quality control analyst for Honeywell and in commercial real estate, both in Texas. She learned about Arizona's water rights from the late and great attorney Michael Brophy of Ryley, Carlock & Applewhite. Her side interests are writing (and reading), Wordpress programming and much more.

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