Cross Connections – What Are They?

Our job is to provide you with safe, reliable drinking water.  Your water is treated by the City of Pulaski and distributed to you by the Fairview Utility District.  Your tap water has gone through careful treatment and numerous tests to ensure its quality and must meet standards set by the EPA before it is pumped to your home or business.

Your help is needed to protect the quality of our community’s drinking water.

Why Cross Connections Control?

Congress established the Safe Drinking Water Act (SWDA) in 1974 to protect human health from contaminants in drinking water and to prevent contamination of existing groundwater supplies.  This act and its amendments (1986 and 1996) require many actions to protect drinking water and its sources.  One of these actions is the installation and maintenance of an approved backflow prevention assembly at the water service connection whenever a potential hazard is determined to exist in the customer’s system.

What is a Cross Connection?

Any connection between your drinking water and another source of water which make it possible for contaminating material to enter a potable water supply is considered a cross connection.

What is Backflow?

This happens when the water in your home flows backward from the normal flow direction.  This is called backflow.

What Causes Backflow?

There are two conditions which cause the system to deviate from the “normal” hydraulic condition, resulting in water flowing in the opposite direction.  1) Backpressure is when the pressure in your home plumbing is greater than the pressure coming into your home and 2) Backsiphonage is a negative pressure in one of the pipes (similar to the vacuum created when you use a straw).  This can be caused by a break in the mainline or sudden high demands such as for firefighting.

A properly installed, tested and maintained backflow preventer at the service entrance to your property can reliably prevent the backflow of contaminated water from flowing back into the community water system.

What is a Backflow Preventer?

It is a mechanical plumbing device installed in a plumbing system to prevent water from flowing backward into the system.

It is the primary goal of the Lynnville Water Department to ensure that our drinking water remains free of any harmful contaminants.  One way we do that is to ensure that a proper backflow preventer is installed and maintained at connections which might pose a significant hazard.  To keep in compliance with cross connection/backflow requirements, we require testing and repair of all external backflow prevention assemblies.

not so obvious hazards!

Did you know your garden hose could unwittingly create a cross connection?

  • Putting the garden hose in a swimming pool to fill
  • Putting the garden hose in a pet’s water bucket to fill it; or the fish tank
  • Putting the garden hose down the drain to flush out debris when it’s backed up
  • Connecting your garden hose to a plant fertilizer or bug spray unit

You, too, can become a “backflow preventer” by observing simple precautions.  Keep an air gap between your garden hose and any other container you might be filling.


together…we protect our drinking water