The Westerly Sun

ASHAWAY — The University of Rhode Island and the Rhode Island Department of Health will offer a free workshop for homeowners with private wells on Feb. 25 at the Ashaway Free Library.

Owners of private wells in Rhode Island are responsible for testing and assuring the quality of their drinking water.

Even water that tastes fine can contain contaminants such as germs, chemicals or toxic waste. In some neighborhoods rocks can release harmful substances such as radon into the water.

Alyson McCann, of the URI Cooperative Extension Water Quality program, will provide information on well water testing, well maintenance and water treatment at the free workshop. 

“Workshop participants will learn about substances that can affect well water, why they are a concern, how to arrange for a well water test, and well water treatment options,” she said. 

Homeowners are advised to follow the well-testing schedule developed by the Rhode Island Department of Health. The schedule helps private well owners ensure that their drinking water remains safe and will identify any potential problems.

“We will review what to test for and when, where to have the water tested, and discuss some basic well maintenance tips,” McCann said.

Experts will be available after the workshop to answer additional questions.

Educational handouts and water testing kits from the Rhode Island Department of Health will be also available for participants. Workshop attendees will be able to return their water samples and payments at the Ashaway Free Library on Wednesday, Feb. 26 at 8 a.m. and URI will transport them to the state health laboratory for testing.

The free workshop will take place from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. Space is limited, so participants are asked to register at: For additional information, call the URI Cooperative Extension at: 401-874-4918


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