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Drinking Water Protection

Sources of drinking water (both tap water and bottled water) include rivers, lakes, streams, reservoirs and groundwater wells. As water travels over the surface of the land or through the ground, it dissolves naturally occurring minerals and can pick up substances resulting from the presence of animals or human activity.

Surface water comes from rivers, creeks, streams and reservoirs and may have more pollutants and contaminants than groundwater. Groundwater comes from wells drilled deep into the ground. Groundwater usually has higher mineral content than surface water.

To minimize the risk of drinking water contamination, a Drinking Water Protection Program (consisting of the Wellhead Protection Plan and Surface Water Emergency Response Plan) has been implemented in accordance with state rules and local ordinances. These programs involve working with local planning teams, regulators and potential sources; mapping drinking water protection areas; identifying potential sources of contamination; working with businesses to prevent spills and releases of chemicals; and preparing a contingency plan in case of contamination. Written Wellhead Protection Plans and Surface Water Emergency Response Plans have been developed and submitted to the Indiana Department of Environmental Management. These plans include a map of the drinking water protection areas around existing wellfields and watershed maps for White River, Fall Creek and Eagle Creek.

People living and working in wellfields or near White River, Fall Creek or Eagle Creek need to be especially careful to keep contaminants off the ground. These contaminants can potentially seep or flow into our drinking water supply.

Contaminants include chemicals that are used in homes, business and industry, and agriculture. Chemicals such as furniture strippers, lawn and garden chemicals, cleaning chemicals and solvents, gasoline, oil, road salt, and others all contaminate water supplies if poured on the ground or improperly used or stored.

Signs are located on streets around the boundaries of the wellfields to let you know you are entering these protected areas.

Additional Wellfield Resources