RESCINDED: Sandspit Community Water System Water Quality Advisory

September 4, 2019


The North Coast Regional District (NCRD), in consultation with the Northern Health Authority (NHA), is rescinding its water quality advisory, issued August 14th, 2019. At this time, water consumption in the community of Sandspit is such that the use of well PW00-5, which had shown arsenic levels below the Maximum Acceptable Concentration (MAC) of arsenic (0.010 mg/liter) at 0.00931 mg/liter, is not required to meet local demand. As such, well PW00-5 has been temporarily shut-off from the Sandspit Community Water system.

Most recent testing conducted at the other two well sources, PW00-7 and PW00-9, has shown arsenic levels to be well below the MAC at 0.00075 mg/liter and 0.00092 mg/liter, respectively.  The NCRD continues to carry out water quality testing at well PWoo-5 to ensure that arsenic and other organic levels remain below the standards set by Health Canada. The public will be notified throughout the water quality testing process and when a reconnection of well PW00-5 to the community water supply is planned.

What is a Water Quality Advisory?

A water quality advisory is the lowest-level notification. A water quality advisory is used in situations where the public health threat is modest, and actions can be taken to reduce the risks by ways other than requiring a boil water notice or do not use notice.

What is well PW00-5? Where is well PW00-5?

Water in the Sandspit community water system is provided from 3 well sources, identified as wells PW00-5, PW00-7, and PW00-9. These wells were installed as part of the water system in 2000. Well Pw00-5 supplies approximately 16% of the community water system’s total water production. Well Pw00-5 is located in the community water system’s lower aquifer just to the north of the Sandspit Golf Course.

What is arsenic?

Health Canada defines arsenic as a naturally occurring chemical element found throughout our environment and its living systems. Arsenic can enter groundwater through erosion and weathering of soils, minerals, and ores. Arsenic compounds are used in the manufacture of a variety of products and may enter our environment directly from industrial effluents and indirectly from atmospheric deposition.  Arsenic exists in different chemical forms, which can be classified into two groups: organic arsenic and inorganic arsenic.


For more information contact Daniel Fish, Chief Administrative Officer for the NCRD at 250.624.2002, ext. 8 or email