Cross-Connection Control and Backflow Prevention

The Cross-Connection Control Department is tasked with preventing contamination of the potable drinking water supply caused by backflow at cross-connections.

Backflow Prevention Device Examples

BFPressure Vacuum Breaker Backflow Preventer BFDouble Check Backflow Prevention Device BFDouble Check Detector Assembly Backflow Device BFReduced Pressure Zone Backflow Preventer
Cross-Connection Control & Backflow Prevention FAQs
What is a cross-connection?
A cross-connection is a point in a plumbing system where it is possible for a non-potable substance to come into contact with the potable drinking water supply.
What is backflow?
Backflow is any unwanted flow of non-potable water or substance from any domestic, industrial or institutional piping system back into the potable water distribution system. The direction of flow under these conditions is opposite of the normal flow and is caused by either backsiphonage or backpressure. Backsiphonage is cased by a negative pressure (vacuum) in the supply piping.  Backpressure occurs when the pressure in the customers plumbing becomes greater than the pressure in the water supply piping.
What is cross-connection control?
Cross-connection control is the methods, practices, and procedures used to prevent non-potable
substances from contaminating the potable drinking water distribution system. 
How is backflow contamination prevented?
Backflow contamination is prevented by avoiding the reverse flow of an unwanted substance using special plumbing methods or with an approved mechanical backflow prevention device. This insures the safety of the drinking water supply system
What is an approved backflow prevention method or device?
Approved backflow prevention methods or devices are physical means or mechanical devices that a nationally recognized laboratory, organization, or institute has tested and approved. 
Why and when is annual testing of backflow prevention devices required?
Stafford County requires that the performance and reliability of all commercial and residential backflow prevention devices be tested at the time of installation and on an annual basis thereafter. Commercial and residential water customers will receive a device testing reminder/notice thirty days prior to the test due date. The test must be conducted by a certified backflow technician who has been approved by Stafford County. After testing the device, the technician will complete a test report. The customer should ensure that the tester provides Stafford County with a copy of the test report within 7 days of completion. Reports may be emailed, faxed, or mailed to this office.
How do I get my water tank truck or equipment certified?
Stafford County requires that any water tank truck or piece of equipment be inspected and
certified before a water usage meter can be obtained. The tank must have a permanent air gap that is twice the diameter of the of the fill pipe, or 2” (inches), whichever is greater.

All inspections are by appointment only and require a 24 hour notice. Please contact our office to
schedule the inspection
What fire hydrants are authorized for bulk water purchases?
Backflow Documents
Approved Certified Testers
Test Report for Backflow Prevention Devices
Approved Backflow Prevention Devices
Water Tank Truck Air Gap Diagram
Bulk Water Authorized Fire Hydrant Location Map
Helpful Backflow Links
Stafford County Backflow Code of Ordinance
EPA Cross-Connection Manual
Backflow Prevention Industry Paper