Although the majority of private water supplies are probably safe to drink most of the time, they are at risk from contamination. A number of serious illnesses caused by pathogens, such as E. coli 0157 and Cryptosporidium can be transmitted through contaminated drinking water supplies. It is essential that you keep your private water supply safe from contamination to protect your and your family's health.
Unregulated Private Water Supply
What is an unregulated private water supply?
An unregulated private water supply is any supply that is not provided by or regulated by a Sanitary Authority. It is any private supply that provides less than 10m3/day of water or serves less than 50 people and does not have a public or commercial activity, such as a restaurant or bed and breakfast respectively. In other words it is a supply to normal residential properties exclusively.
Private Regulated Water Supply
If your water supply is from a private source i.e. borehole or river, and supplies over 50 persons on average or has a commercial or public interest this is a deemed a Private Regulated Water Supply. All private regulated water supplies must be registered with Louth County Council.
Louth County Council has a duty under the European Union (Drinking Water) Regulations 2014 to monitor the quality of private regulated drinking water supplies within the county. Monitoring of water supplies at consumer taps in the county is carried out by Louth County Council. We then provide the reports from our tests to the Environmental Protection Agency who assess and publish their own reports on the drinking water quality.
In the case of private regulated water supplies, Louth County Council is the supervisory authority. They have the same role that the EPA has for public supplies. If a private regulated water supply falls below the Drinking Water Regulations standards, the local authority notifies the owner of the scheme. The owner must submit an action programme to the local authority which will address the problem within a certain timescale. The local authority has legal enforcement powers if appropriate action is not taken.
For all regulated private water supplies, the HSE is informed if there is a potential danger to human health and agrees remedial actions with the local authority for the protection of public health.