Annual Water Quality Report


The Federal Safe Drinking Water Act requires the City of Salem to provide an annual report with information about the quality of the community’s drinking water.

The annual water quality report includes information about:

  • Possible water contaminants
  • Salem’s sources of drinking water
  • Ways to get involved
  • Water conservation
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Man testing water.

Regular testing of Salem’s water helps ensure delivery of safe and clean water.


Monitoring is an important first barrier in making sure contaminants stay out of the City’s water supply. Keeping track of current conditions through monitoring allows the assurance of a high quality product, and a quick response to any changes that could potentially impact the water supply.

Constant monitoring at the City’s treatment facility and daily routine testing of the water at various sites throughout the distribution system help ensure that a clean and safe product is being delivered to customers, and that all federal and state regulations are met.

The Federal Safe Drinking Water Act mandates the City of Salem collect at least 120 bacteriological samples per month. In town, 48 routine sample sites, which were chosen with the assistance of the Oregon Health Authority Drinking Water Program, are strategically located to allow monitoring in all areas of the distribution system. A bacteriological sample is collected at each site approximately once a week. Temperature, pH, turbidity, and chlorine residual parameters are also monitored.

The City of Salem’s watershed program monitors conditions, collects data, and samples water in the North Santiam watershed, where Salem’s drinking water supply originates. This ensures clean, safe water for residents to use.

To meet Oregon Health Authority rules, the City of Salem monitors for the presence of Total Microcystin and Cylindrospermopsin (cyanotoxins).  Regulatory monitoring for cyanotoxins in North Santiam Watershed typically begins in April and ends in October (algae season) and water quality data is posted for two key locations.

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