What areas of water quality do Environmental Health Officers look at?
Online request for information.
Private Water Supplies: For those who extract their private water supply from boreholes, wells or other sources not supplied by a water undertaker.
Bathing waters: to include swimming pools at leisure centres, Jacuzzi's, hydrotherapy pools.
Mains Water: To include Manufacturers of foods and drinks as well as occasionally looking at domestic supply.
Private Water Supplies
A risk assessment of all water supplies serving more than one household now has to be carried out every 5 years to determine that the supply and any treatment is capable of supplying safe wholesome water.
Where inspection and sampling shows this is not the case the local authority can require improvements to be carried out to improve the quality of the water supply.
For further information on the legislation and advice on providing a safe water supply please visit Private Water Supplies.
Please see charges (pdf 15kb) made for sampling and inspecting private water supplies within Stafford Borough 2016.
We have a number of domestic and commercial private water supplies where we are the responsible authority for monitoring their quality both microbiologically (bacteria) and chemically (eg pesticides).
The legislation we use is made under the Water Industry Act 1991 and is called the Private Water Supplies Regulations 2009.
This tells us what the standards of the water should be and how often we have to test the water depending upon its use.
We are responsible for checking the quality of all our swimming pools to include leisure centres, private health clubs, hotels and outdoor pools, hospital hydrotherapy pools, Jacuzzi's and paddling pools.
We check the chemical levels and microbiological quality of the water if we receive a complaint or if an owner of an establishment requests a sample to be taken, charges may apply.
Mains Water Supply
We also examine the quality of the mains water of our food manufacturers to include breweries and other food industries. We may occasionally become involved in the testing of domestic mains water in addition to the statutory water undertaker.
In addition, the Drinking Water Inspectorate, who are the national body for ensuring the quality of water, provide an annual publication titled 'How Good is Your Drinking Water'.
Frequently Asked Questions
If your water is supplied by a water company (eg Severn Trent Water) you should contact them first. If you are not happy with their response then the Council can take water samples from your home. If the water to your home is not supplied from the water mains the Council will take samples of the water, we will make a charge for this - see charges (pdf 15kb).
No, not routinely. The Drinking Water Inspectorate do this and publish reports. The Water companies do have a duty to keep the Council informed about the water quality in the area. The Drinking Water Inspectorate check that the water companies comply with this requirement.
Yes. The Private Water Supplies Regulations 2009 require us to have a sampling programme for these supplies. The Regulations set the standard the water must attain, the frequency of sampling and what we test for.
Yes, if the Council is responsible for health and safety regulations at the work place. In other circumstances we may refer you to the Health and Safety Executive. If the work place manufactures food we may take water samples as part of our duties under food safety legislation.
Yes, we will investigate your concerns and taking a water sample may form part of this work.
The Water Pollution Guide website has useful information about the sources of water pollution and how they can be treated.