BACKFLOW AND CROSS-CONNECTION
Arizona Administrative Code Section R18-04-215 and Global Water Resources' Codes of Practice require public water systems to protect consumers from contamination caused by backflow through unprotected cross-connections by requiring the installation and periodic testing of backflow prevention assemblies. Arizona Administrative Code R14-2-405.B.6 requires that any customer’s lines be installed so as to prevent cross-connection or backflow contamination.
Accordingly, Global Water Resources requires backflow prevention assemblies to be installed and/or retrofitted at the service connection where there exists a possibility of cross-connection contamination caused by backflow.
In drinking water pipes, whether in a commercial building or a family residence, water pressure can suddenly drop for a number of reasons. Drops in water pressure can occur during high water use in the home (running all water appliances, showering, watering) or high water use in the distribution system (fire fighting, water main break). When these drops of water pressure occur, contaminated water can be siphoned back into your plumbing system through an unprotected cross connection in your home or in the distribution system.
The type of backflow prevention assembly required is determined based on the hazards present at a particular service connection. There are four categories.
Category 1: Non-residential, commercial and industrial property service lines.
Category 2: Non-exempt single-family and multi-family residences with common or dual plumbing.
Category 3: Dedicated irrigation service lines.
Category 4: Fire service lines.
You should review a copy of the Backflow and Cross Connection Tariff for your utility, located here.
Customer Responsibility for Backflow Prevention
Global Water Resources will specify, as required by its tariffs and the Arizona Administrative Code, if a backflow prevention assembly is required and the type of assembly needed for a particular service connection. Where a backflow prevention assembly is required, it must be located on the customer’s side of the service connection, downstream of the meter. The approved backflow prevention assembly is installed, owned, tested and maintained by the customer. In accordance with the Arizona Administrative Code Section R14-2-407, the customer is responsible for maintaining customer-owned equipment.
Title 14, Chapter 2 regarding Fixed Utilities and customer responsibilities is located here. Title 18, Chapter 4 regarding Safe Drinking Water, including provisions regarding backflow and cross-connection is located here. Clicking these links will take you to a third party website. Global Water is not responsible for the content or availability of these third-party websites.