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All samples for coliform analysis must be collected in regulation, sterile bottles supplied by this Laboratory. Complete directions for collecting a proper sample are found on the back of the request form included with each sample kit. Directions must be followed closely to ensure that the sample is not contaminated during collection. Samples must reach this Laboratory and be processed within a maximum of 30 hours after collection. Samples arriving after 30 hours will be rejected as unsuitable for analysis. Each sample must be properly identified with a completed form. A minimum of 100 ml is required for drinking water samples submitted for testing of total coliforms (fill to or slightly above the line). For non-drinking water samples submitted for both fecal coliform and fecal streptococcus, the bottle should be filled to the neck.

Non-drinking water samples should be refrigerated during a maximum transport time of six hours. A special courier may be required to deliver the samples to this Laboratory. Arrangements for these analyses should be made with the Laboratory by telephone at least 24 hours in advance.


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The North Carolina State Laboratory of Public Health has upgraded its website reporting portal to enhance protection of health related information.

Results for environmental samples reported by the NCSLPH are not considered HIPPA protected documents. To access this data click the Continue button and you will be directed to the webpage where results can be viewed and printed.