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Cross-Connection and Backflow Prevention

Cross-connections are any unprotected actual or potential connections between a public or a consumer’s potable water system and any other source through which it is possible to introduce any substance other than the intended potable water.

Cross-connections that contaminate drinking water distribution lines are a major concern.  A cross-connection is formed at any point where a drinking water line connects to equipment, systems containing chemicals (air conditioning systems, fire sprinkler systems, irrigation systems), or water sources of questionable quality.  Cross-connection contamination can occur when the pressure in the equipment or system is greater than the pressure inside the drinking water line (backpressure).  Contamination can also occur when the pressure in the drinking water line drops due to fairly routine occurrences (main breaks, heavy water demand), causing contaminants to be sucked out from the equipment and into the drinking water line (backsiphonage).

Backflow is the undesirable reversal of flow of water or mixtures of water and other liquids into the distribution pipes of the potable supply of water from any source.  Bypass arrangements, jumper connections or any other temporary or permanent connections through which backflow can occur are considered to be cross-connections, and are illegal.

Protection against backflow is provided by a variety of backflow prevention devices (BFPs) which are selected according to the potential hazard.

All backflow prevention assemblies (BFPs) must be tested upon installation and certified to be operating within specifications.  Backflow prevention assemblies which are installed to provide protection against health hazards must also be tested and certified to be operating within specifications at least annually by a approved backflow prevention assembly tester.

A Test Report must be completed by the certified backflow prevention assembly tester for each assembly tested.  The signed and dated original must be submitted to the District for record keeping purposes.

Backflow prevention assembly testers must be qualified to test and repair assemblies on any domestic, commercial, industrial or irrigation service.  Backflow prevention assembly testers may test and repair assemblies on firelines only if there are permanently employed by an approved fireline contractor.  The State Fire Marshall’s office requires that any person performing maintenance on firelines must be employed by an approved fireline contractor.

If your system has a high hazard BFP installed for health hazard protection you will need to contact Backflow Solutions, Inc. at https://www.bsionlinetracking.com/

To become an approved backflow prevention assembly tester with Travis County WCID No. 17, you must provide to BSI Online proof of licensing and proof that you’re testing equipment can maintain calibration of plus or minus 0.2 psi accuracy.

Backflow Prevention Assembly Tester (BPAT) license and gauge calibration certification must be submitted and maintained before any backflow test reports will be entered into the system.
Reports will be rejected if the updated license and gauge information are not on file and available upon request of Travis County WCID No. 17 Backflow Official.

Travis County WCID No. 17 sends notifications, through BSI Online, to businesses 30 days prior to their testing due date. If not completed within 30 days you will receive a second notice you are OVERDUE and giving you 15 DAYS to complete. If still not complete you will receive a FINAL NOTICE stating if you have not completed these tests or contacted us within the next 10 days, water service will be terminated until the testing can be completed. If you have your device tested and it did not pass, you will have 30 days to have the device repaired and retested.

If you receive a notice, you will need to do the following:

  1. Hire a registered Backflow Tester.
  2. Provide your Customer Confirmation Number (CCN), located on the notice, to your Tester.
  3. Check your test report status using your CCN at Backflow Solutions, Inc. at. https://www.bsionlinetracking.com/

The backflow tester will need to:

  1. Perform the required test.
  2. Submit all test reports through BSI Online. How-to-Submit-Test-Reports.pdf
  3. Pay $ 12.95 per test report submitted.

Tester Resources

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