In accordance with Rhode Island Department of Health Rules & Regulations for Water Suppliers, the Newport Water Division (NWD) has developed a Cross-Connection Program to safeguard public drinking water and protect the health of our customers by maintaining a high level of backflow prevention and cross-connection control.
Cross-connections between water supplies and non-potable sources of contamination represent one of the most significant threats to health in the water supply industry. Our program is therefore designed to maintain the safety of the water in the system by preventing the introduction of any containment(s) by providing protection from actual or potential cross-connections.
In order to provide this safeguard NWD must protect the public drinking water supply from the possibility of contamination from private water service connections. The Program is detailed in Chapter 13.06 of the City Ordinances. NWD recognizes the difference in the threat to the public water system arising from different types of connection. The backflow device required by NWD is based on the degree of Hazard as determined by NWD. NWD uses the following classifications:
Class I – Low Degree of Hazard: If backflow were to occur, the resulting health significance would be limited to minor changes in the esthetic quality such as taste, odor or color. The foreign substance must be non-toxic and non- bacterial in nature and not have significant health effect.
Class II – Moderate Degree of Hazard: If backflow were to occur, the resulting effect on water supply would be significant changes in esthetic qualities. The foreign substance must be non-toxic to humans and non bacterial in nature.
Class III – High Degree of Hazard: If backflow were to occur, the resulting effect on the water supply could cause illness or death if consumed by humans. The foreign substance may be toxic to humans either chemically, bacteriologically or radiologically. Toxicity may result from either short or long term exposure.
A cross-connection is any connection or arrangement, physical or otherwise, between a potable water supply system and any plumbing fixture, tank, or any receptacle, through which it may be possible for non-potable, used, unclean, polluted, contaminated water, and/or other substances to enter into any part of such potable water system under any condition. It is not necessary for contamination or backflow to have actually occurred. A cross-connection is simply the connection through which it may be possible for backflow or contamination to occur.
A backflow assembly is a mechanical assembly that is subject to failure. It is impossible to tell if it is working by appearance only. An operational test using a differential gauge is required to determine if the backflow is working properly.
No, testing of all backflow prevention devices shall be performed by a Certified backflow tester at the Owners expense.
All testable backflow preventers are to have annually passed and report submitted by September 1st.
A failed assembly will need to be cleaned, repaired or in some cases it may need to be completely replaced. After cleaning, repair or replacement a successful re-test needs to be performed and turned into the Cross Connection Control Program within 7 days. Please note, High degree of hazard situations will not be allowed to continue unprotected if the backflow preventer fails the test and cannot be immediately repaired.
43 Broadway, Newport, RI 02840
Phone: (401) 845-5300 (M-F 8:30 am - 4:30 pm)
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