February 28, 2005

Fort Frances fined $5K for violating terms of water system approval

FORT FRANCES, ONT-The town of Fort Frances was convicted on two charges of violating the terms of its approval to operate a municipal drinking water system. The Certificate of Approval (C of A) for the system, which serves the Couchiching First Nation as well as the town's 8,300 residents, sets out a number of conditions for the operation of the system. In February 2004, a routine inspection of the water system by the Ministry of Environment (MOE) uncovered a number of issues. A broader investigation revealed that the town had failed to prepare an operations manual and had failed to analyze treated water samples for a required parameter between June and August 2003. As both activities were required under the C of A for the system, the failure to carry them out violated regulation 170/03 under the Ontario Water Resources Act (OWRA) and also breached section 140(3) under the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA). Fines of $3,000 were levied for the manual-related offence and $2,000 for the sampling violation.

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