News Release 392

Department identifies 23 public water systems that fail to monitor drinking water quality

Volume 39-392 (For Immediate Release)
For more information: 573-751-1010

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo., DEC. 2, 2011 – The Missouri Department of Natural Resources has identified 23 drinking water systems in Missouri that have chronically failed to complete drinking water testing required by the department to ensure a safe water supply.

The systems listed have at least three major monitoring violations in a 12-month period, with the most recent violations occurring in the third quarter of 2011. While failing to monitor does not necessarily mean the water is unsafe, routine testing by a facility is a crucial part of maintaining a safe water supply.

The department requires all public water systems to test for bacteria at least once a month to verify these systems are providing safe drinking water to the public. The vast majority of community and non-community public water systems in Missouri complies with all monitoring requirements and meets all drinking water standards. Chronic violators are the exception rather than the rule. This current list of 23 systems represents less than one percent of the approximately 2,800 public drinking water systems in Missouri.

Bacteriological testing can be the first step in identifying and correcting a problem. The next step is to investigate the cause of any bad samples and perform corrective action, such as disinfecting and flushing the system. When a public water system has a record of both failing to monitor and a history of exceeding contaminant levels, this may raise concerns about the unknown quality of the drinking water.

If a water sample tests positive for total coliform bacteria, further testing is then performed for fecal coliform or E. coli bacteria, which can directly cause gastrointestinal illness. Most samples that test positive for total coliform test negative for fecal coliform or E. coli. Unless specifically stated otherwise, the total coliform-positive samples listed on our website tested negative for fecal coliform or E. coli. When fecal coliform or E. coli is confirmed, the department requires a public water system to immediately notify its customers to boil their drinking water, or in the case of a non-community system, to provide an alternative source, such as bottled water, in addition to notifying the affected public.

To view more details on the violators listed, visit the department's website at dnr.mo.gov/env/wpp/chronic/index.html.

County -- Public Drinking Water System
• Barry -- Jenkins Kwik Stop.
• Benton -- Hidden Valley Mobile Home Park, Last Chance Restaurant and Lounge, Sun Valley Subdivision, TT Campground.
• Camden -- Nantucket Bay.
• Dallas -- Fraternal Order of Eagles 4010.
• Greene -- Expressway Stop.
• Hickory -- Shadow Lake Golf Course.
• Jefferson -- Walker Hill Mobile Home Park.
• Maries -- Moreland’s Catfish Patch and Steak House.
• Miller -- Camp Bagnell Campground.
• Montgomery -- Danville Sinclair.
• Morgan Mallard Bay.
• Pettis -- Budget Host Super 7 Motel.
• Polk -- Valley View Acres.
• St. Louis -- Whispering Oaks Health Care.
• Stone -- Cedar Haven Resort, Cross Roads Store.
• Taney -- East Fork Subdivision, GDM Investment Project, Savannah Place Third Addition.
• Webster -- Eagle Stop.

These systems' owners have been sent multiple violation notices in addition to certified letters informing them that chronic failure to monitor is unacceptable. Representatives of the Department of Natural Resources also routinely make on-site inspections and attempt to reach an agreement with the responsible parties to ensure sampling requirements will be met. If these parties continue to fail to comply with Missouri's drinking water law, the department pursues more stringent enforcement action through legal channels.

For more information, contact the department's Water Protection Program at
800-361-4827.

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