Total Trihalomenthanes (TTHM) Levels in Water Supply


Total Trihalomethanes (TTHMs) Drinking Water Update
Updated: 24-Oct-2016

This is an important notice – please translate it for anyone who does not understand English (see page footer for translation services).

The Maynard Department of Public Works and Town Administrator Kevin Sweet seek to update residents and business owners in the Town of Maynard regarding elevated levels of Total Trihalomenthanes (TTHMs) in the town’s drinking water supply.

The town’s water supply is safe to drink and use. No boil water order has been issued. 

Under the revised state Disinfection By-Product Rule Stage 2 requirements, the Town of Maynard’s public water system is required to monitor the drinking water for TTHMs levels on a quarterly basis at four approved locations. A four-quarter running annual average at any location above the standard or maximum contaminant level (MCL) for TTHMs of more than 80 ppb is considered out of compliance.

As you were previously notified, the results of Maynard’s second quarter 2016 sampling showed levels which exceeded the MCL for TTHMs.

During the most recent round of sampling completed in September 2016, the 86 Powder Mill Road site had a TTHM level of 90 ppb, resulting in a four quarter average of 100 ppb at that location. The 3 Powder Mill Road testing site had a TTHM level of 76 ppb, resulting in a four quarter average of 81 ppb at that location.

The Town of Maynard is committed to a remediation plan that will lower the TTHM levels and keep them below compliance levels in the future. You will receive a notice similar to this every three months until the TTHM four quarter average is below 80 ppb at all four testing sites and compliance with MassDEP drinking water standards.

What do elevated TTHMs mean for consumers?

Elevated levels do not pose an immediate risk. If there had been, you would have been notified right away. However, the scientific community believes that Some people who drink water containing (TTHMs) in excess of the MCL over many years may experience problems with their liver, kidneys, or central nervous system, and may have an increased risk of getting cancer. There is research that indicates pregnant women, infants, and women of childbearing age may be at increased risk for health problems and should seek advice from their health care providers if they have any concerns. For more information on risk determination, refer to MassDEP’s Question and Answer Guide to Maynard’s TTHMs Exceedance.

Our water system is working with Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) on evaluating and implementing immediate short-term operational changes and long- term upgrades to the treatment plants and the water system with the intention of correcting this issue.
The Town is committed to:

  • An ongoing and extensive review of all three drinking water treatment plants in Town;
  • Working with our third party engineering consultant to continuously review and update Standard Operating Procedures for the water treatment plants;
    Improving operations at the water treatment plants and throughout the distribution system;
  • Self-testing for TTHMs beyond what the state requires, to ensure that TTHM levels continue to drop;
  • Flushing of fire hydrants throughout Town and establishing a new schedule to conduct more routine hydrant flushing of the distribution system;
  • Continued meetings and follow-ups with MassDEP.

What can you do? You do not need to do anything. Town Administrator Sweet is aware that commercial vendors may be contacting residents, after viewing this public notice, in an attempt to sell “water purification products” and appliances to residents. Please note that the Town of Maynard does not endorse any specific product, however some activated carbon (charcoal) type filters, can help remove or lower chlorine and TTHM levels.

For more information please read the MassDEP’s Question and Answer Guide to Maynard’s TTHMs Exceedance or contact the Department of Public Works at or by phone at 978-897-1317.

Those with questions or concerns can also contact the US EPA Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 800-426-4791.

Please share this information with all the other people who drink this water, especially those who may not have received this notice directly (for example, people in apartments, nursing homes, schools, and businesses). You can do this by posting this notice in a public place or distributing copies by hand or mail. Please translate this message for those who do not understand English. 

This notice is being sent to you by the Town of Maynard
Public Water System PWS ID# 2174000.
Date Distributed:  October 21, 2016