Water Contamination

One of the most common documented impacts of fracking is around water quality and contamination. Because of this concern, many residents will conduct baseline water testing so they have data about their water quality before industrial activity occurs.

If you think there is something wrong with your water (through visual, smell, taste observation OR testing) you should contact the DEP via their complaint line.

Once DEP confirms your complaint, you will receive a letter that acknowledges the contamination. This will send a trigger to the operator/company alerting them to the need to provide replacement water.

Different levels of contamination call for different plans of action. At a minimum, if testing shows that your well is contaminated, do not drink the water. Notify the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and the Pennsylvania Department of Health (or your local agency if outside of PA).

If more serious contamination is found, residents should also limit bathing and cooking with their well water, ventilate rooms where water is used (for example, laundry and bathrooms), and treat the water system.

A detailed explanation of monitoring results and actions to take can be found in the Southwest PA Environmental Health Project (SWPA-EHP) Well Water Testing Report. or view the shorter executive summary here.

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