Water Quality Advisory Update


February 23, 2018

Santa Rosa Water's Post-Fire Water Quality Investigation

On November 10, 2017, Santa Rosa Water issued a Do-Not-Drink and Do-Not-Boil water quality advisory for an isolated area of Fountaingrove when elevated levels of benzene were identified. To date, Santa Rosa Water has taken almost one thousand post-fire water quality samples to determine the source of contamination.

Santa Rosa Water is using this sampling data to drive our investigation. With the help of water quality experts from across the nation, including a forensic chemist, we are working diligently to find the source of contamination in order to resolve the issue as quickly as possible. 

Inside the water quality advisory area, we are finding the highest levels of benzene in investigative water samples taken from services to destroyed properties, but are also finding elevated levels in the water main and other components of the water system. Outside of the advisory area, water quality sampling continues to show no change in water quality.

Using sampling data to drive the investigation

It is Santa Rosa Water’s mission to protect public health by providing a safe water supply, which we take very seriously. Using data to drive our decisions, we are deepening our investigation as we narrow in on the source of the contamination. As a result, we have taken over 300 investigatory samples from water services both inside and outside of the water quality advisory area.

Drinking water quality samples taken outside of the water quality advisory area from the water main -- which are representative of the drinking water supplied to your home -- and from water services to existing homes within the fire impacted areas, continue to meet all drinking water quality standards.

This investigation has also uncovered a very small number of instances where water services to destroyed properties have exceeded the maximum allowable level of benzene outside the advisory area. At these locations, we have, or are in the process of, removing the contaminated water service and replacing it with a brand-new water service.

Post Fire Water Quality Investigation

(Click here to enlarge post-fire water quality investigation map)

Do-Not-Drink and Do-Not-Boil water quality advisory area is NOT expanding

Outside of the advisory area, Santa Rosa Water has found no evidence of benzene in the water mains, which is representative of the drinking water supplied to your home, and no evidence of contamination in water services to existing homes. The latest sampling data shows that of the over 100 water service samples taken outside of the advisory zone, including water services to destroyed properties, only six water services show elevated levels of benzene in first draw samples. 

water service

These new findings are different from what occurred inside the advisory area where we continue to find elevated levels of benzene at water sample stations. Samples taken from sample stations are representative of water quality in the water main. Outside of the advisory area there is no evidence of elevated levels of benzene at water sample stations. Please be assured that if there are any changes in your water quality, Santa Rosa Water will notify you immediately.

Santa Rosa Water will continue to take water quality samples from water mains throughout the city on a regular basis to ensure that your drinking water meets or exceeds drinking water standards.

For additional information about the water quality advisory, visit or srcity.org/wqadvisory and for specific questions about your water quality, please call our water quality hotline at 707-543-3965.