Unglamorous backflow testing keeps drinking water safe for all

By Brian Hernandez, Staff Writer

Verbum Dei, the responsible campus it is, has an annual test for its backflow device, which assures safe, drinkable water for students and faculty. Law requires annual check-ups for all such backflow devices.

“A backflow prevention device is used to protect potable water from contamination or pollution,” Jeff Bonino-Britsch, Vice President of Operations.  “In water supply systems, water is normally maintained at a significant pressure to enable water to flow from the tap, shower, or other fixture.”

“[A backflow prevention device] allows water to flow in one direction but never in the opposite direction,” said Bonino-Britsch.  “Its sole job is to prevent drinking water from being contaminated due to backflow.”

“It is mandated that large entities use a backflow device to make sure that contaminated water doesn’t flow back into drinking water, and we must have it checked annually for effectiveness,” said Bonino-Britsch.  “We [can] get fined if it isn’t tested.”

“I typically refill my water bottles while here on campus at the water fountains, so I’m glad that they’re checking the system out,” senior Shawn Loera said.  “That way I don’t have to worry about the water I’m drinking being dirty.”

When asked about pricing for a backflow device checkup, Bonino-Britsch said, “The typical rate for backflow device testing can actually vary greatly within one area. Some places charge as little as $20, and a place 5 miles away could be charging $75.”

“I’m glad Verb is taking care of its system,”  senior Kaleb Dean said.  “That way no one gets a fine and no one on campus gets sick due to water pollution.”

According to Bonino-Britsch, the testing date will be before March 31.

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