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Portland Water Bureau

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1120 SW Fifth Ave, Suite 600, Portland, OR 97204

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Water Quality Trivia

By Lindsay Wochnick

Under the Environmental Protection Agency’s Total Coliform Rule (TCR), all public water systems are required to test treated water throughout the distribution system for the presence of total coliform bacteria.  Which of the following statements is false?

- Coliform bacteria are naturally present in the environment and are used as an indicator that other potentially-harmful bacteria may be present in the water.

- The Portland Water Bureau collects routine TCR samples from 90 sampling stations throughout the City of Portland.

- Water is collected and analyzed from each sampling station once per month.

C is false. Of the 90 routine TCR sampling stations, 74 are tested every other week, 15 are tested weekly, and one (1) is tested four (4) days per week.  On average, around 235 samples are collected each month.

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