Wellhead protection is a way to prevent drinking water from becoming polluted by managing potential sources of contamination in the area which supplies water to a public well. Potential contaminant sources include non-municipal wells, potential Class V wells (consisting of properties associated with automotive repair and large scale septic systems likely serving more than 20 people), hazardous waste generators, chemical storage sites, storage tanks, old dump sites, and spill sites. The goals and objectives of wellhead protection focus on reducing the potential contaminant pathways to the source water aquifer, providing education regarding wellhead and source water protection, and working with the cities of Apple Valley and Farmington to ensure, to the extent possible, proper management of the portions of the main drinking water supply management areas that extend into these cities. Much can be done to prevent pollution, such as the wise use of land and chemicals. Wellhead protection efforts protect public health and work to avoid the expense of treating polluted water or drilling new wells.
One source of contamination is an improperly maintained private well. The Minnesota Department of Health (PDF) is a great resource for well owners on how to properly maintain private wells.