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Cross Connect
General Information

Why Are We Doing This?
In 1974 Congress passed a law know as the “Safe Drinking Water Act” (SDWA). SDWA was put into place to establish national standards for drinking water. This law authorized the United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) to set national health-based standards for drinking water to protect against both naturally-occurring and man-made contaminants that may be found in drinking water. US EPA, states, and water systems then work together to make sure that these standards are met. Amendments were made to the SDWA in 1986 and 1996. You can read more about U.S. EPA and the SDWA at the EPA website. The SDWA is enforced in the State of Wisconsin under Department of Commerce s. Comm 82.41, and the Department of Natural Resources s. NR 811.09.

What is a Cross Connection?
A cross connection is an unprotected direct (or potential) connection between drinking water piping and a contamination source. This can be as simple as a garden hose that is submerged in a swimming pool, a bucket of detergent, or other contaminated water. Under certain conditions, cross connections can allow unclean water to flow backward through the piping system and potentially contaminate the drinking water. This is called backflow, and is caused by backsiphonage and backpressure.

What is Backsiphonage?
“The creation of backflow as a result of negative pressure.” The supply pressure must drop for backsiphonage to take place. This can happen from a broken water pipe or within your own house if the right circumstances exist.

What is Backpressure?
“A greater pressure than the supply pressure which may cause backflow.” Backpressure can be created by an unprotected boiler or recirculating pump as well as many other situations that could potentially exist in homes and businesses.

Homeowners
The next time the Water Department makes an appointment with you to exchange your water meter, they will also need access to any and all plumbing fixtures in and around your house. This request for an appointment may come to you by phone or by letter. Either way, your cooperation is a critical part of the success of this program. During the appointment our Water Department staff will need access to places like:
  • Bathrooms
  • Kitchens
  • Utility Rooms
  • Basements
  • Swimming Pools / Hot Tubs
  • Inside / outside hose fixtures and faucets.
  • Irrigation Systems
  • Any place where potable water lines are present in your home

These cross connection inspections are taking place at the time of the meter exchange in order to make access to your property as infrequent as possible. There is no special charge for this survey or meter exchange.

After the Survey
If the only corrective actions needed involve the installation of hose bibb vacuum breakers, the Water Department will proved up to three per household to bring the property into immediate compliance and avoid the need for a follow-up visit.

First Notice
If non-compliant situations are found during the survey, you will be notified to take specific corrective actions. The corrective actions will be clear to you, the homeowner, so that know exactly what needs to be done. If anything is unclear, please contact us at the Water Department. The homeowner will be given 30 days from the time the notice of corrective action was received to complete the needed changes or to have the Water Department approve a plan to make the needed changes. When the corrections have been made, simply notify our staff and our employees will re-visit your property to make sure all corrective actions were taken. It is very important that some form of contact is made with the Water Department within 30 days of receiving your first notification. We are aware some situations may require more time, but we cannot grant that time if we are not contacted.

Second Notice
If, within 30 days, the Water Department has not received a call or other communication from a home where corrective actions were needed, the homeowner will receive a second notice. This notice will restate the corrections and give notification of the following disconnection of service notice.

Notice of Disconnection
Approximately 30 days after the second notice is given, a homeowner who has made the required efforts to comply with this program will receive a notice of disconnection. Disconnection will occur between 10 and 15 days after the notice is received.

When is the Next Survey?
Survey frequency for residential accounts is set up to correspond with the required meter exchange frequency, currently 10 years. If specific hazards are found on your property that requires a more frequent survey interval, we will adjust it accordingly.

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Businesses
Wisconsin Administrative Code requires plumbing and piping systems in business and industrial facilities to be checked periodically for actual and potential cross connections.

Within the next three years, all businesses will be surveyed to check for compliance with the City’s cross connection control program and ordinance. You will be contacted to set up an appointment to allow Water Department representatives to inspect your business for existing or potential cross connections. There is no special charge for this survey.

The Commercial, Industrial, and Public facilities in the City of Stevens Point are being inspected by a representative company we have contracted with to perform these services. The company information is as follows: 
Hydro Designs Inc.
5700 Crooks Road, Suite 100
Troy, MI 48098

200 S. Executive Drive, Suite 101
Brookfield, WI 53005
Ph: (800) 690-6651 

While on site our representatives will need access to all fixtures, equipment and processes that use (or could use) water from the municipal water distribution system. Your cooperation helps ensure safe drinking water for everyone.

After the Survey
If the only corrective actions needed involve the installation of hose bibb vacuum breakers, up to six per business will be installed to bring the property into immediate compliance and avoid the need for a follow-up visit.

First Notice
If non-compliant situations are found during the survey, you will be notified to take specific corrective actions. The corrective actions will be clear to you, the business owner, so that know exactly what needs to be done. If anything is unclear, please contact Hydro Designs at (800) 690-6651. The business owner will be given 30 days from the time the notice of corrective action was received to complete the needed changes or to have the Water Department approve a plan to make the needed changes. When the corrections have been made, simply notify Hydro Designs and they will re-visit your property to make sure all corrective actions were taken. It is very important that some form of contact is made with Hydro Designs within 30 days of receiving your first notification. We are aware some situations may require more time, but that time cannot be granted if contact is not made in an appropriate time frame.

Second Notice
If, within 30 days, Hydro Designs has not received a call or other communication from a business where corrective actions were needed, the business will receive a second notice. This notice will restate the needed corrections and give notification of the following disconnection of service notice.

Notice of Disconnection
Approximately 30 days after the second notice is given, a business owner who has not made the required efforts to comply with this program will receive a notice of disconnection. Disconnection will occur between 10 and 15 days after the notice is received.

When is the next survey?
Survey frequency for commercial, industrial, and public accounts is based on the degree of hazard at each location. This frequency will be determined after the first inspection, and will be somewhere between two and 10 years.

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City of Wonderful Water
City of Stevens Point, 1515 Strongs Ave., Stevens Point, WI 54481 | Phone 715-346-1569