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DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION
Bureau of Safe Drinking Water
New Source Sampling Requirements for Groundwater Sources for
Community and Noncommunity Systems
Upon notice of publication as final in the
Pennsylvania’s Safe Drinking Water Act (35 P.S. §721.1
regulations at 25 Pa. Code Chapter 109.
Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) staff will follow the
guidance and procedures presented in this document to direct and support
implementation of new source sampling activities under the Safe Drinking
The purpose of this document is to establish a rational and reasonable
basis for staff decisions which will promote quality, timely and consistent
service to the public and regulated community.
This guidance will apply to sampling of all new community and
noncommunity groundwater systems and transient noncommunity
groundwater systems that are required to obtain a construction permit.
The policies and procedures outlined in this guidance are intended to
supplement existing requirements. Nothing in the policies or procedures
shall affect regulatory requirements.
The policies and procedures herein are not an adjudication or a regulation.
There is no intent on the part of DEP to give the rules in these policies that
weight or deference. This document establishes the framework within
which DEP will exercise its administrative discretion in the future. DEP
reserves the discretion to deviate from this policy statement if
See Title 25 Pa. Code Chapter 109
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According to 25 Pa. Code §109.503 and 109.505, a public water supply that intends to serve as a
community or noncommunity system should conduct an evaluation of the quality of the raw water for all
new sources. The following guidance outlines the procedures and lists the minimum sampling
requirements for all new community and nontransient noncommunity groundwater systems and transient
noncommunity groundwater systems that are required to obtain a DEP-issued construction permit.
When appropriate, all groundwater samples should be collected prior to submission of the public water
supply construction permit application. It is recommended that the public water supplier contact the
appropriate DEP regional office to obtain information regarding specific new source sampling
requirements and additional guidance on sampling procedure early in the process. If applicable, the
appropriate river basin commission should also be contacted prior to sampling.
The public water supplier or its consultant is responsible for collecting all groundwater samples. Sample
collection should be conducted immediately following the constant-rate pumping test, when the
groundwater system is stressed and most representative of groundwater quality. Samples should be
collected from a sampling port directly from the groundwater discharge pipe in an appropriate manner
that does not alter the original groundwater chemistry. In absence of a constant-rate pumping test all
groundwater samples should be collected directly from the production well prior to any filtration and/or
treatment so that the original groundwater chemistry is not altered. In order to achieve reliable
laboratory results, proper collection, preparation and storage of groundwater samples and the use of
appropriate sampling equipment and techniques should be followed and documented. Additionally,
samples of all volatile organic compounds (VOCs) should be collected by a person properly trained by a
laboratory accredited by the DEP to conduct VOC analysis.
All analyses of samples should be performed by a laboratory that is certified by the DEP under
Subchapter H of 25 Pa. Code Chapter 109. The samples should be submitted to the laboratory in
laboratory-issued bottleware, with appropriate chain-of-custody documentation and within the required
List of Minimum Sampling Requirements
The following tables list the minimum sampling requirements for new groundwater sources. Unless
otherwise instructed by the DEP, all groundwater samples should be analyzed according to the list
below. The DEP may require monitoring of any other contaminant(s) as determined necessary to
adequately evaluate the quality of the source.
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VOLATILE ORGANIC COMPOUNDS (VOCs):
VINYL CHLORIDE (See NOTE)
NOTE: Monitoring for vinyl chloride is only required when one or more of the following two-carbon compounds are detected: trichloroethylene,
tetrachloroethylene, trans-1,2-dichloroethylene, cis-1,2-dichloroethylene, 1,2-dichloroethane, 1,1-dichloroethylene, 1,1,1-trichloroethane.
SYNTHETIC ORGANIC COMPOUNDS (SOCs):
ETHYLENE DIBROMIDE (EDB)
2, 3, 7, 8-TCDD (DIOXIN)
2, 4, 5-TP (SILVEX)
1. Monitoring for PCBs and/or dioxin is required when there is a contamination source within 1,000 feet of the new groundwater source. Provide
details of the assessment in Public Water Supply Module 3A, Part U to support a finding of no sources of contamination.
INORGANIC COMPOUNDS (IOCs):
ASBESTOS (see NOTE)
NITRATE (as Nitrogen)
NITRITE (as Nitrogen)
NOTE: Monitoring for asbestos is required when DEP has reason to believe the source is vulnerable to contamination.
GROSS BETA (See NOTE)
NOTE: If the Gross Beta exceeds 50 pCi/L, analyze the same or equivalent sample to identify the major radioactive constituents present.
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Three (3) separate samples obtained at 15-minute intervals immediately prior to the conclusion
of the constant rate aquifer test.
For each Total Coliform positive sample, analyze the same or equivalent sample for
SECONDARY CONTAMINANTS AND OTHERS:
pH (See NOTE)
TEMPERATURE (See NOTE)
TOTAL DISSOLVED SOLIDS
TOTAL ORGANIC CARBON
NOTE: Temperature and pH measurements may be obtained in the field within 15 minutes of sample collection.
The project applicant should coordinate with appropriate DEP
regional staff regarding MPA sampling. Sampling should be
conducted by the DEP or the project applicant for new groundwater
sources which fall within the criteria of the
Guidance for Surface
Water Identification Protocol,
DEP ID: 383-3500-106, available on
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