PWS Technical Assistance & Enforcement

Technical assistance requests are handled by the Public Water Supply Engineering & Enforcement Section (PWSES). PWSES staff provide technical assistance to all regulated Public Water Supply (PWS) systems in the State of Oklahoma. To request technical assistance, see the contact information provided below in the PWSES District Map tab, or click here.

In addition to providing technical assistance, the PWSES works with the Environmental Complaints & Local Services Division (ECLS) of DEQ to respond to PWS emergencies, citizen complaints, and in completing  Sanitary Surveys. The PWSES also conducts Comprehensive Performance Evaluations, enforces all primary drinking water standards, and participates in the Area-Wide Optimization Program.

The PWSES consists of eleven District Engineers and District Representatives who are dedicated to completing these tasks in order to protect the public health and environment of the State of Oklahoma. A current PWSES District Map has been provided below which shows the responsible staff member for each of Oklahoma’s seventy-seven counties, along with their contact information.

The information provided below is intended to assist PWS systems and the public in understanding the purpose and process of the different areas that the PWSES oversees.

2018.11.6 Eufaula PWA 013
2018.11.7 Eufaula PWA 092
2018.11.6 Eufaula PWA 001
Technical Assistance
Technical assistance visits are used in an attempt to prevent regulated PWS systems from having compliance issues. In order to achieve this, DEQ makes frequent contact to speak with the PWS system’s Certified Operator, Public Works Director, City Manager, etc., to determine if there are issues DEQ can help to resolve. In addition, DEQ maintains a close working relationship with other technical assistance providers, such as Communities Unlimited and the Oklahoma Rural Water Association (ORWA). To request technical assistance from DEQ, click here or see the PWSES District Map provided below for contact information.
Emergency Response
Along with the ECLS Division, the PWSES is responsible for assisting in PWS emergencies. Some of the most common PWS emergencies include: loss of pressure in a water distribution system, verified E.coli contamination, back-siphoning events, chemical spills, harmful algal blooms, and flooding. In the event that the Public Water Supply Compliance Section (PWSCS) determines the need to issue a Boil Order to a PWS system, the PWSES works with the impacted entity to determine the cause and assist in resolving the issue.
Useful Links for Emergency Response
Coming soon!
Comprehensive Performance Evaluation
A Comprehensive Performance Evaluation (CPE) is a thorough review and analysis of a water treatment plant's performance-based capabilities and associated administrative, operation and maintenance practices. It is conducted to identify factors that may be adversely impacting a plant's capability to achieve compliance and emphasizes approaches that can be implemented without significant capital improvements. A CPE consists of at least the following components: Assessment of plant performance; evaluation of major unit processes; identification and prioritization of performance limiting factors; assessment of the applicability of comprehensive technical assistance; and preparation of a CPE report.
Useful Links for Comprehensive Performance Evaluation
Coming soon!
Area-Wide Optimization Program (AWOP)

The Area-Wide Optimization Program (AWOP) sets goals for going above and beyond regulatory requirements and focuses on maximizing water quality through operational measures and strategies. Optimization of a water system is achieved through enhanced process monitoring and control as well as using existing staff and infrastructure. Implementation of AWOP concepts increases public health protection, maximizes cost benefits, and results in providing the absolute best water possible to customers.

Click here to view some of the Optimized Goals
Microbial Performance Goals – Sedimentation

  • Average Raw Water >10 NTU, settled water turbidity goal is < 2 NTU
  • Average Raw Water <=10 NTU, settled water turbidity goal is < 1 NTU

Microbial Performance Goals – Filtration

  • < 10 NTU 95% of the time for individual and combined filter effluents
  • Maximum filtered water turbidity of 0.3 NTU
  • Maximum filtered water turbidity following a backwash of 0.3 NTU, and returns to <10 NTU within 15 minutes

Microbial Performance Goals – Disinfection

  • Consistently calculate disinfectant Concentration x Time (CT) to ensure the achievement of the required log inactivation of Giardia and viruses.

Disinfection By-Product and TOC Performance Goals

  • Running Annual Average (RAA) ratio of 1.10 or greater for TOC removal
  • Total Trihalomethanes (TTHM) Locational Running Annual Average (LRAA) <060 mg/L
  • Haloacetic Acids (HAA5) LRAA <040 mg/L

Do you want to be awarded for implementing AWOP concepts?

Through the new Oklahoma AWOP Awards Program, water systems can now be recognized for their outstanding work in producing top-quality water. The AWOP Awards Program is intended to encourage participation in implementing optimization concepts by recognizing and awarding the top optimized water systems in the state.

Who can participate?

All Public Water Supply Systems can participate!

The awards will be broken into four separate divisions: Surface Water/Groundwater Under the Direct Influence of Surface Water (GWUDI) Systems, Groundwater Systems, Purchase Water Systems, and Non-Community Systems. Each division will be scored separately, meaning that there will be four total AWOP Award winners each calendar year.

How is it scored?

  • Criteria with various point values to be applied to each water system
  • Scores for each participating system will be determined on an annual calendar year basis
  • Example criteria:
    • Turbidity, IFE and CFE (if applicable)
    • Monitoring
    • Capacity Development Assessment
    • Water Loss Audit
    • MCL violations
    • And a few more

The Awards and Benefits of Participation!

  • A customized flag for the top system in each category
  • A customized metal sign for the top system in each category to be displayed along the highway/road when entering the city or district
  • Optimization certificates for all participating systems
  • Systems participating in the awards program will be made priority for water leak detection (if deemed warranted by the water loss audit)
  • The proud feeling knowing that your water system is the most optimized in the state of Oklahoma!!

The top optimized systems will be recognized and receive their awards at the Oklahoma Rural Water Association Conference in Spring of 2020.

Are you interested in becoming optimized and getting awarded? It is easy to join!
  • Simply contact the AWOP Awards committee by clicking here.
  • We are waiting anxiously to get you enrolled!

Useful Links for AWOP
Coming soon!
Notice of Violation
A Notice of Violation (NOV) is issued to any regulated PWS system whenever DEQ personnel identify violations of the Oklahoma Administrative Code (OAC), Oklahoma Statutes (O.S.), or Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). NOVs are the first step in the enforcement process and requires PWS systems to comply with certain requirements. These requirements are typically to address whatever the violation cited is by taking corrective action, submission of a written response outlining these actions along with why such actions should prevent the same violations from occurring in the future.
Why did my PWS system receive a Notice of Violation
To understand why a PWS system received a NOV, the responsible staff for the PWS system should thoroughly review the NOV and take note of the violations cited and how these violations were determined. In the event that a PWS system believes a violation was cited in error, they should contact the DEQ staff member whose name is provided in the NOV.
How to properly respond to a Notice of Violation
In order for a response to be deemed acceptable, provide, at minimum, the following:

If the cause of the violation(s) has been determined and corrected, follow these steps for developing the required written response:
    1. Provide a description of what caused the violation(s) to occur;
    2. Provide an explanation of the actions taken by the PWS system to address the violation(s);
    3. Explain why such actions a sufficient to prevent the violation(s) from occurring in the future; and
    4. Print the response on the PWS system’s letterhead, have a responsible official sign it, then mail it to DEQ at the address provided in the NOV.
If the cause of the violation(s) has been determined but has not been corrected, follow these steps for developing the required written response:
    1. Provide a description of what caused the violation(s) to occur;
    2. Provide a detailed plan with the corrective actions necessary for expeditious elimination of the violation(s);
    3. Include a proposed schedule for implementing the necessary corrective actions; and
    4. Print the response on the PWS system’s letterhead, have a responsible official sign it, then mail it to DEQ at the address provided in the NOV.
If the cause of the violation(s) has not been determined, follow these steps for developing the required written response:
    1. Provide an explanation for why the cause of the violation(s) has not been determined;
    2. Include a proposed schedule for determining the cause of the violation(s); and
    3. Print the response on the PWS system’s letterhead, have a responsible official sign it, then mail it to DEQ at the address provided in the NOV.
Consent Order
A Consent Order (Order) is a mutually agreed upon, legally binding document which contains a mandated compliance schedule for taking corrective actions to address violations identified by DEQ.
PWSES District Map
PWS Engineering Section - District Map