Central Arkansas Water releases Water Quality Report: Drinking water quality meets standards for health and safety

For Immediate Release:  June 10, 2011

For more information, contact:
Samantha J. Williams, Communications Assistant
(501) 377.1307 or (501) 377.1229
Samantha.Williams@carkw.com

LITTLE ROCK — Central Arkansas Water (CAW) customers recently opened their mailboxes to excellent news with the receipt of their 2010 Water Quality Report.  The report, a requirement of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) and Arkansas Department of Health, provides customers with information about the quality and sources of their drinking water.   

During the most recent 12-month reporting period (January 1, 2010, through December 31, 2010), CAW was in full compliance with all federal and state regulations for water quality.  For the 37th straight year, the utility has maintained a record of ZERO violations of the federal Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) and Arkansas’ Rules and Regulations Pertaining to Public Water Systems. 

USEPA and the Health Department require the release of the report by July 1 of each year.  CAW is ahead of schedule, with the issuance of its report in May. 

“Quality drinking water is our priority in serving customers.  In being the stewards of this valuable resource, we hold ourselves accountable to the highest standard,” says Graham W. Rich, P.E., BCEE, Chief Executive Officer. 

CAW officials are quick to point out that the “37th straight year” simply coincides with the 1974 enactment of the federal Safe Drinking Water Act, which sets the standards for drinking water quality, and they note that the utility and its predecessors have an even longer record of delivering quality water to the tap of households, businesses, and industries in the Little Rock-North Little Rock metropolitan area. 

They attribute the quality of the drinking water to quality sources, Lake Maumelle and Lake Winona; a program of monitoring and treatment that is more extensive than federal and state requirements; and the utility’s dedicated team of source, treatment, distribution, and laboratory personnel. 

Since 1998, the SDWA, through its Consumer Confidence Rule, has mandated that public water suppliers by July 1 of every year make available certain information to their customers.  The annual reporting must include information on a utility’s water sources, treatment process, and most importantly the levels of potential contaminants that are found at detectable levels in the drinking water.  Potential contaminants include substances such as lead, copper, pesticides, and coliform bacteria. 

The federal SDWA requires certain monitoring and treatment of drinking water to ensure the protection of public health.  Enforcement of the law is the responsibility of USEPA on the federal level and the Arkansas Department of Health on the state level. 

Recognizing that water quality is important to every consumer within its distribution system, CAW goes beyond the federal mandate by issuing the report to all consumers that the utility serves.  The Consumer Confidence Rule requires that a metropolitan public water supplier ensure that all metered locations receive the information.  CAW’s consumer population includes 127,401 metered locations, plus another approximately 47,600 families who live in apartment units, or business that lease office space, and do not pay a water bill directly to the utility.  Including the latter category of households, CAW’s 2010 Water Quality Report went to over 165,000 consumer locations. 

CAW, the largest public water supplier in the state, serves a retail and master-metered population of approximately 389,000 in the two-county region of Pulaski and Saline.  The utility supplies treated water for 18 cities and communities.

For more information, visit www.carkw.com