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Notice For Private Well Owners

Notice For Private Well Owners

ATTENTION: Private Well Owners in Amador County

 Jackson, CA - California’s groundwater may contain naturally occurring radioactivity. Radioactive minerals occur irregularly in California’s bedrock, and when dissolved in water, radionuclides are colorless, odorless, and tasteless. Unlike community water systems, private wells in California are not routinely regulated or monitored for contaminants like radionuclides.  As a result, well owners are responsible for ensuring their drinking water is safe. In some well water, the concentrations of radionuclides exceed public drinking water standards, called maximum contaminant levels (MCLs). Long-term exposure to radionuclides above the drinking water standards may increase one's risk of cancer and/or kidney problems.  It is recommended that consumption of water containing levels of radionuclides above the MCLs be avoided, and that bottled water be used for drinking and cooking purposes.  Previously the community was notified via press release that radionuclide levels in excess of the State MCLs were found in a well drilled for a small community water system to the east of Jackson, CA.  In response to this, the Amador County Environmental Health Department performed a voluntary sampling program of private wells in the vicinity of this community well.   Some of the water wells sampled were found to have radium above the drinking water MCL.  There is technology available for removing radionuclides from drinking water, but treatment requires ongoing maintenance and monitoring to ensure proper performance. Should you be interested in having your water supply tested for radionuclides, please contact a California certified laboratory.  For a list of laboratories in our area, please call Amador County Environmental Health Department at 223-6439 or visit our website at


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