Emergency Publications for Water Systems

If an emergency (accident, natural disaster, criminal action) affects your water system, these resources will help you. For assistance during normal business hours, contact your local health department or regional office. If an emergency occurs after hours, call our 24-hour Emergency Hotline.


Coliform Public Health Advisory Packet (DOH 331-260)

Color, taste and odor problems in drinking water (PDF, DOH 331-286)

Department of Health's role during a drought emergency (fact sheet) (PDF, DOH 331-297)

Do not drink: Contaminated water (poster) (PDF, DOH 331-265)

Do not drink: Water contaminated with Nitrate (poster) (PDF, DOH 331-266)

Drinking Water After-hours Emergency Hotline (PDF, DOH 331-133)

Drinking Water Security for Small Systems Serving 3,300 or Fewer Persons (PDF, EPA Publication 817-R-05-001)

Emergency Disinfection of Drinking Water (PDF, EPA Publication 816-F-15-003)

Emergency Disinfection of Small Systems (PDF, DOH 331-242)

Emergency Disinfection of Small Systems 331-242 (PDF) Ukrainian

Emergency Disinfection of Small Systems 331-242 (PDF) Russian

Emergency Disinfection of Small Systems 331-242 (PDF) Spanish

Emergency Disinfection of Small Systems 331-242 (PDF) Tagalog

Emergency Disinfection of Small Systems 331-242 (PDF) Vietnamese

Emergency Drinking Water Sources (PDF, DOH 331-317)

Emergency Response Planning Guide for Public Drinking Water Systems (PDF, DOH 331-211)

Emergency Water Supply Guidelines for Food Establishments / Spanish

Features of an Active and Effective Protective Program (PDF, EPA Publication) 817-F-08-005

Flood Advice for Drinking Water Systems (fact sheet) (PDF, DOH 331-300) (Note: Water systems should make preparations to keep their facilities safe during a flood. Read more...)

Guidelines for Truck Transportation of Emergency Water Supply for Public Use (brochure) (PDF, DOH 331-063)

Nitrate Public Health Advisory Packet (DOH 331-259)

Preparing Water Shortage Response Plans (guidance document) (PDF, DOH 331-301)

Public Notification Handbook (PDF, EPA Publication 816-R-09-013)

Public Notification Handbook for Transient Noncommunity Water Systems (PDF, EPA Publication 816-R-09-009)

Public Notification Helps to Protect Public Health (fact sheet) (PDF, DOH 331-239)

Responding to a Backflow Incident (PDF, DOH 331-494) (Note: You can use the Drinking Water Warning: Backflow Incident Form (Word) for public notification)

Responding to a Threat Against a Water System (fact sheet) (PDF, DOH 331-183)

Responding to Pressure-Loss Events (Q&A) (PDF, DOH 331-338)
(Note: You can use the Drinking Water Warning: Loss of Pressure Form (Word) for public notification)

Translated Drinking Water Warnings (DOH 331-246)

Treatment of Drinking Water for Emergency Use (brochure) (PDF, DOH 331-115)

Washington WARN - Washington's Water / Wastewater Agency Response Network (PDF)

Water Main Break Response Protocol for Chlorinated Systems (PDF, DOH 331-583)

Water shortage response plans for small public drinking water systems (guidance document) (DOH 331-316)

Water System Security and Emergency Response Planning (PDF, DOH 331-199)

For more information

Eastern Region:Spokane Valley 509-329-2100

Northwest Region: Kent 253-395-6750

Southwest Region: Tumwater 360-236-3030

After-hours Emergency: 877-481-4901