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Harmful Algal Blooms: Drinking Water Cyanotoxin Monitoring

Oregon Health Authority has developed rules that require drinking water systems in the state using water sources prone to harmful algae blooms to routinely test for cyanotoxins that these blooms produce, and notify the public about the test results.
These rules are effective starting Dec. 27, 2018 and replace temporary rules that were effective July 1, 2018 through Dec. 27, 2018.
As part of this rulemaking, water systems subject to these rules can send their samples to the Department of Environmental Quality’s laboratory in Hillsboro for analysis.
For information concerning the rulemaking or other general guidance, please visit the Oregon Health Authority’s website.

Working with DEQ’s laboratory

Resources for drinking water providers

General questions about the entire process, please review the presentation or view the webinar. The webinar provides in-depth information concerning how to collect, package and ship your sample.  

Sampling using the DEQ Laboratory
The list of susceptible facilities is split into groups for the initial sampling schedule. Your facility’s group will remain the same as long as your facility remains on the basic every other week sampling requirement. Based on sample results, the frequency of your sampling may change.
  • Contact the DEQ Laboratory for the current drinking water facility sampling schedule.

Packing and shipping

In order to maintain the integrity of your samples and the resulting data, samples must be sent to the laboratory in a cooler with sufficient ice packs to cool the sample. Please review the presentation above to see detailed instructions on packing.


For information concerning sample collection, please contact the DEQ Laboratory:

Nathan Reetz
Water Quality Monitoring Specialist

Sarah Rockwell
Laboratory Data Coordinator

Main DEQ Laboratory line: 503-693-5700
For questions or information concerning the rule or other general drinking water information, please contact the Oregon Health Authority