The drinking water distribution system is a complex network of pipes and storage tanks that brings clean water to homes and businesses. It is also the pathway for contaminants to enter the system.
A variety of sources, from aging infrastructure to natural disasters, can cause drinking water distribution systems to fail. This can result in contamination of the public drinking water supply with pathogens or other hazardous substances such as lead.
A few recommendations for reducing risk in these systems in order to provide safe drinking water for all areas. These recommendations include:
- Monitoring and testing of source waters.
- Protection against contamination during distribution.
- Regular inspection and maintenance of pipes, pumps, valves, and storage tanks.