Backflow and Cross Connection

The Cross Connection department is responsible for testing residential, commercial, and industrial backflow devices within the District, in compliance with the Safe Drinking Water Act and state law. The Safe Drinking Water Act and state law require homes with irrigation systems to have backflow prevention devices. The law also requires that First Utility District test these devices once a year. The fee for the test is $50, which is the average amount required to cover our costs for administering the program.

Backflow Assembly

If a customer has a lawn sprinkler system, for example, the customer is required to install and maintain a backflow prevention device to prevent water system contamination. The device stops water from running back into the system if there’s a drop in pressure or a back pressure situation.

For example, if there’s a fire and the fire department activates hydrants, the change in water pressure could cause water in a sprinkler system to flow backward into the home’s water supply. Fertilizer or bacteria could contaminate the water system for not just the one home, but for others in the neighborhood. In some communities, there have been serious issues because of backflow—including e. coli contamination. For more details, visit

If you have questions or would like to learn more about the Cross Connection program, please contact Jeremy Bailey at 865-777-2523 or email

Jeremy Bailey, Supervisor