Turbidity is the cloudiness or haziness of a
fluid caused by large numbers of individual
particles that are generally invisible to the
naked eye, similar to smoke in air. The
measurement of turbidity is a key test of
water quality, as most legislation uses
turbidity as a standard. Turbidity is usually
measured in NTU (nepheolotemetric units).
Total Suspended Solids
TSS are solid materials, including organic and
inorganic, that are suspended in the water.
These include silt, plant matter, and other
debris. High concentrations of suspended
solids can lower water and lead to deadly
situations for salmonid species.
Fecal Coliform Bacteria
Fecal coliform bacteria are an indicator of
water contamination, usually due to human
and animal waste. Most coliforms are
harmless to human beings, but a few can
cause minor to major issues.
The KCWP Water Quality Lab was established in 2003, with ongoing accreditation through
the Washington State Department of Ecology ever since.
By testing our locally-collected water samples in-house, we're assured fast and accurate
results. Previously, our samples had to be shipped as far away as Boise, Idaho, in the cargo
section of a Greyhound bus. Thus, our sample collection was determined by the bus
schedule and Boise lab work schedule. Now we can take samples anytime we need to, find
out results within several hours, and use the data to make decisions immediately.
Please note that our lab is only accredited for surface water--we do not sample wells or
other potable water. Follow this link to Ecology's search tool for accredited labs for
drinking water and surface water.
KCWP Water Quality Lab
Copyright 2015, 2016 Kittitas County Water Purveyors
PO Box 276
Ellensburg, WA 98926