Public Notice Rule

Protecting Your Water/Health

One of the best ways water systems can contribute to community health is to make sure as many people as possible within a service area know about water quality issues and how to protect themselves from potential risks. Public notification of drinking water violations and other situations provides a way to educate the public, protect public health, build trust with consumers through open and honest sharing of information, and establish an ongoing, positive relationship with your community.

Maintaining Compliance

Tier 1 (Immediate Notice, Within 24 Hours)

Notice as soon as practical or within 24 hours via radio, TV, hand delivery, posting, or other method specified by primacy agency, along with other methods if needed, to reach persons served. Public Water Supply Systems must also initiate consultation with primacy agency within 24 hours. Primacy agency may establish additional requirements during consultation.

Tier 2 (Notice as Soon as Possible, Within 30 Days)

Notice as soon as practical or within 30 days. Repeat notice every three months until violation is resolved. Community Water Systems: Notice via mail or direct delivery. Non-Community Water Systems: Notice via posting, direct delivery, or mail. Primacy agencies may permit alternate methods. All Public Water Systems must use additional delivery methods reasonably calculated to reach other consumers not notified by the first method.

Tier 3 (Annual Notice)

Notice within 12 months, repeated annually for unresolved violations. Notices for individual violations can be combined into an annual notice (including the Consumer Confidence Report, if public notification requirements can still be met). Community Water Systems: Notice via mail or direct delivery. Non-Community Water Systems: Notice via posting, direct delivery, or mail. Primacy agencies may permit alternate methods. All PWSs must use additional delivery methods reasonably calculated to reach other consumers not notified by the first method.

Reporting (10 Days) and Record Keeping (3 Years)

Public Water Systems have ten days to send a certification of compliance and a copy of the completed notice to the primacy agency. Public Water Systems must keep notices on file for three years.

Additional Resources

EPA Public Notification Handbook

Contact the appropriate Rule Manager for Assistance with a public notice, or call DEQ Public Water Supply Bureau at (406) 444-4400.