It’s no surprise that state and local codes and laws are constantly changing and being updated as needed. Backflow isn’t one of the places you might expect to see changes to regulations. After all, it’s pretty straight-forward what should be required–right? Not exactly. I mentioned a while back that different water purveyors require distinctly different backflow report forms. Similarly, different municipalities and local governments require different backflow devices to be tested to be in line with state law and EPA requirements.
Recently, Minnesota put into effect new code regarding which backflow devices need to be tested annually. Prior to 2015, only Reduced Pressure Assemblies were required to be tested. Per the recent addition to the Minnesota Plumbing Code Chapter 6, backflow devices falling under Air Gap, AVB, DC, PVB, RP, and DC are all now required to be tested yearly. Instead of staying stagnant, backflow testing is becoming a larger industry. (And this is just one example!)
“The Flint water crisis has spurred other communities to take a closer look at their water.” Mattie Kahn, Elle Magazine
While recently thumbing through an ELLE magazine, I was struck by an article on Flint, Michigan. Elle Magazine simply isn’t the place I expected to see an article pertaining to clean water supply. The ongoing Flint Michigan disaster has caused other areas to look into their water supply. This means plumbing regulations are evolving. Although lead in the water isn’t related to backflow devices, the Flint crisis has motivated local and state leaders to look at every aspect of clean water. Because of this, backflow regulations are increasing.
Backflow testing is incrementally increasing in various states and local governments–from Minnesota declaring that additional backflow devices be tested to Colorado’s stricter regulations increasing, cross connection isn’t a static industry. If you’re on the backflow side of things, this is a positive for your business! Clean water matters, and being in an industry where we can assure this it means being able to help. While the expansion of cross connection regulations will take time to be implemented, you can check with your local or state government. This way, you consider hiring testers soon to be ahead of the curve. As I always preach, being proactive rather than reactive pays off quickly.