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Drinking Water


The Drinking Water Branch carries out the requirements of the federal Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) which is designed to ensure that Public Water Supplies (PWS) deliver water to Hoosier homes and businesses that is adequate in quantity and is safe to drink.

We do this by concentrating on the water from the source all the way to the tap. The Drinking Water Branch consists of the following sections: Compliance, Inspection, GroundwaterCapacity Development & Operator Certification, and Permits.

Drinking Water Sections

The Compliance Section is responsible for updating and maintaining inventory information as well as implementing Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) rules and regulations applicable to approximately 4,043 active Public Water Systems (PWS). These water systems can be small restaurants and office buildings with their own wells or large utilities providing water to entire cities.  Staff utilize the Safe Drinking Water Information System (SDWIS)/State to update, manage, and evaluate the rules and regulations to determine compliance with a system’s monitoring and reporting requirements.  Water systems and the public can utilize our NEW Drinking Water Viewer to view monitoring/sampling schedules, drinking water sample results, and other information about their public water systems. Instructions for Navigating the NEW Drinking Water Viewer [PDF]

The Inspection Section ensures that Public Water Supplies (PWSs) are operated and maintained in such a way that they produce safe water and meet the requirements of the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA). The section staff perform routine inspections at all PWSs. These inspections include a review of the source, treatment, distribution system, storage, monitoring programs, operator certification and the overall management and operation of the PWS. Section staff also work with PWS owners to identify the best place to locate a new production well.  Well sites need to meet several conditions for approval to maximize source water protection.

The goal of the Groundwater Section is to protect, understand, and increase awareness about the importance of Indiana's groundwater and surface water resources for current and future generations. The Groundwater Section provides guidance for public water systems in establishing Wellhead Protection Plans, Source Water Assessment Plans , responding to citizen’s complaints, as well as providing guidance to private well owners and characterizing groundwater statewide. In February 2021, IDEM began Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) monitoring at all Community Water Systems throughout the state of Indiana. Additional information on this monitoring can be found on the PFAS sampling program page.

The Capacity Development & Operator Certification administers programs which are designed to help ensure public water systems operate effectively and efficiently. The capacity development program has two components designed to help ensure the provision of safe and adequate supplies of drinking water. The first assists drinking water systems to help them with acquiring and maintaining sufficient technical, managerial, and financial capacity to effectively operate their system. The second component ensures that new community and non-transient non-community public water systems understand the requirements of the Safe Drinking Water Act and have the capability to meet those requirements prior to beginning operation. The drinking water operator certification program carries out the testing and certification for drinking water system operators. This program also maintains the continuing education approval for drinking water certified operators.

The Permit Section has an overall mission of protecting the quality of drinking water supplies and distribution systems through the review of designs for public water system construction projects, issuance of construction permits and implementation of Indiana’s Cross Connection Control and Backflow Prevention program.

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