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PRIVATE WELL TESTING ACT PROGRAM - page 12 / 75

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Part 1: Introduction

On March 23, 2001, the Private Well Testing Act (PWTA or Act), as set forth by N.J.S.A. C.58:12A-26 et seq., was signed into law. A copy of the Act is available online at

http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/2000/Bills/PL01/40 .htm. The regulations require that buyers and sellers, and landlords

Act and its associated and tenants, whose potable

water

supply

is

provided

by

a

private

well,

share

information

about

the

quality

of

that

water.

Private

wells

of

properties

either

being

sold

or

leased

must

be

tested

for

a

specific list of parameters in accordance with the Private at N.J.A.C. 7:9E et seq.5 The Act made the exchange

Well Testing Act Regulations of information regarding the

quality

of

the

ground

water

and

its

untreated

potability

mandatory,

similar

to

other

required

information

obtained

during

the

purchase

of

a

house,

such

as

a

termite

inspection and a shared with the

building inspection. This water quality information is required to New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP)

be to

enhance is found

the understanding of statewide groundwater to exceed the drinking water standard, the

quality. Whenever a contaminant NJDEP is required to notify the

county or local health department. neighboring homes and businesses of the particular well test failure.

The that

county may be

or local health agency may then notify affected without disclosing the location

This report summarizes the analytical results from over 51,028 private wells tested between September 2002 and April 2007 under the Private Well Testing Act. This report is a follow-up to the NJDEP’s report entitled Initial Well Test Results for September 2002 - March 2003 that was released in March 2004.

A total of 55,749 samples were submitted to the state’s PWTA database during the period of September 2002 through April 2007 from a total of 51,028 wells throughout the state. If a well was sampled more than once, the highest PWTA parameter result value was used in this analysis. The results found in this report confirm many of the findings that were presented in the initial PWTA Report of March 2004. Data associated with gross alpha particle activity are included and evaluated in this report for the first time. Gross alpha particle activity data was not included in the initial PWTA report because this testing requirement was initiated and phased in beginning in March 2003, the cut-off date for the initial report.6 The phase-in occurred initially in those counties where gross alpha particle activity in groundwater was suspected to be the greatest.

This report includes a Definition and Terms Section (Appendix A) providing many

commonly used terms that relate to the PWTA program.

In addition, further information

about

the

PWTA

program

can

be

found

at

the

PWTA

webpage

at

http://www.nj.gov/dep/pwta.

For information regarding common treatments available to

homeowners

having

well

contamination

above

a

Maximum

Contaminant

Level,

Action

5 The NJDEP estimates that there are about 400,000 private domestic wells in New Jersey, or about 13 p e r c e n t o f a l l N e w J e r s e y p r i v a t e w e l l s . 6 The gross alpha particle activity measurement is required in Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May Cumberland, Gloucester, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, and Salem Counties.

1

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