Prepare Now for Reduced Harmful Algal Bloom (HAB) Off-Season Monitoring (November 4, 2018 – May 4, 2019)
Starting November 4, water systems that have not detected microcystins or mcyE genes in their source water for at least two consecutive weeks are eligible for reduced off-season HAB monitoring. View the guidance document for details.
Please note, the monitoring schedules presented below remain in effect until further monitoring reductions become available for eligible water systems on November 4. Ohio EPA will update this website with off-season monitoring schedule information the week prior to the new schedules going into effect.
State HAB Coordinator (Heather Raymond) – (614) 644-2911
State HAB Specialist (Ruth Briland) – (614) 369-4045
Central District (Tya Darden) – (614) 728-3866
Northeast District (Chris Maslo) – (330) 963-1164
Northwest District (Ben Sloan) – (419) 419-3718
Southeast District (Jessica Dingman) – (740) 380-5236
Southwest District (Brian Chitti) – (937) 204-1199
HAB Off-Season Monitoring Requirements for Ohio Public Water Systems
Starting November 4, 2018, PWSs that have not detected microcystins in raw or finished water samples for at least two consecutive weeks are eligible for reduced HAB monitoring. Eligible water systems may elect to follow the off-season schedule specified in rule, biweekly raw water microcytins AND paired biweekly raw water qPCR screening, or follow further reduced monitoring schedules specified below:
|1 and 2
||Reduced HAB Season Schedule 1/2
- Biweekly raw water microcystins; OR
- Biweekly qPCR screening
||Reduced HAB Season Schedule 3
- Monthly raw water microcystins; OR
- Monthly qPCR screening
- Ohio EPA will assume all eligible PWSs will elect to conduct microcystins only off-season monitoring unless they indicated their preference for qPCR screening to Ohio EPA in writing.
- PWSs may not change between microcystins and qPCR monitoring during the off-season.
- During the off-season, if mcyE genes or microcystins are detected in the raw water:
- PWS must collect paired raw and finished water microcystins samples within 24 hours of receiving the result and complete analysis within five days. If PWS already collected a finished water microcystin sample with a raw water microcystins sample, an additional raw and finished water sample is not required until the following week.
- PWS will continue with weekly paired raw and finished water microcystins monitoring until non-detect for at least two consecutive weeks, then PWS is eligible to transition to off-season monitoring Schedule 1/2.
- Raw water microcystins detections >5ug/L and finished water microcystins detection trigger additional monitoring requirements (see OAC Rule 3745-90-03).
- Schedule 1 and 2 water systems that are eligible for reduced off-season raw water monitoring that elect to conduct qPCR screening must continue to collect qPCR samples on the same week they currently conduct qPCR screening. Eligible water systems that elect to conduct microcystins only monitoring in the off-season must sample for microcystins on the alternate week.
- Consecutive systems that purchase water from out of state systems are not eligible for additional on-season or off-season reduced monitoring, they will continue following OAC Rule 3745-90-03.
- Any PWS has the option to follow monitoring according to OAC Rule 3745-90-03.
More information can be found by viewing the guidance document located at the top of the page. Please contact your district HAB coordinator with any questions.
NOTE: It is the responsibility of the PWS to identify their eligibility for reduced monitoring and recognize that off-season microcystins or mcyE gene detections trigger follow-up paired raw and finished water microcystins monitoring.