NSF to conduct seminar on protocol’s expanded scope and requirements at WQA Aquatech Show on March 6th

LAS VEGAS, NV – NSF International, a global public health organization that develops American national standards for the water, food and consumer products industries, has expanded the scope of the protocol that addresses military water purification devices (NSF Protocol P248 Military Operations Microbiological Water Purifiers).  NSF developed the protocol with the U.S. Army Public Health Command (US APHC).

The NSF protocol helps protect the health of Service Members that use water purification devices and initially covered small individual water purifiers (IWPs).  The expanded scope now includes individual water purifiers and additional systems known as small unit (e.g. squad or platoon size) water purifiers collectively known as SWP (small water purifiers), which can be used on planned missions up to seven days in duration or longer under certain situations.  In addition to military use, the water purification devices covered under the protocol can be used by disaster/emergency response teams, backpackers and others who do not have ready access to a treated water supply.

NSF International will conduct a seminar on the military water purification devices protocol at the WQA Aquatech trade show at 4:00pm PST on Tuesday, March 6th in Room N206. NSF International experts will discuss background, requirements and the expanded scope of the protocol with representatives from the U.S. Army Public Health Command and the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research Development and Engineering Center in attendance.

Based on the EPA Guide Standard and Protocols for Testing Microbiological Purifiers, NSF Protocol P248 outlines the requirements for removing the type of microbiological contaminants from drinking water likely to be encountered during military operations.  Manufacturers whose products are tested and comply with the performance (Appendix B) criteria of NSF Protocol P248 receive a Government Review Agency P248 Letter of Compliance, which can be provided to those who purchase these devices for the military and other agencies.

Products that also successfully complete material safety, structural integrity, performance and literature and labeling evaluation earn certification to NSF P248, which allows for the use of the NSF Mark on the product and promotional materials in addition to the Government Review Agency P248 Letter of Compliance.

“The goal of the NSF protocol for microbiological water purifiers is to ensure that military personnel, and others, have access to safe drinking water from any freshwater source that may be available to them when deployed or in the field,” said Nikki Beetsch, Group Lead for NSF International’s Drinking Water Division.  “For the past 40 years, NSF International has led the development of the American National Standards for products that come into contact with drinking water.”

“NSF International is the logical organization to collaborate on the development of this protocol with the U.S. Army,” said Beetsch.  “We have the expertise in water treatment systems required to develop the test protocols and the facility, equipment and people to implement the protocol by conducting the testing.”

For more information about NSF Protocol P248 Military Operations Microbiological Water Purifiers visit the NSF website or contact military@nsf.org or 734-913-5718. For more information on NSF International’s Drinking Water Testing and Certification Programs or protocol development, contact Ellen Van Buren at 734-827-3822 or vanburen@nsf.org.

Editor's note: To schedule an interview with Nikki Beetsch, contact Greta Houlahan at 734-913-5723 or houlahan@nsf.org.

About NSF International: NSF International is an independent organization that writes standards, tests and certifies products for the food, water and consumer goods industries to minimize adverse health effects and protect the environment (nsf.org). Founded in 1944, NSF is committed to protecting human health and safety worldwide. NSF is a World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Food and Water Safety and Indoor Environment.

NSF International’s Water Programs require extensive product testing and unannounced audits of production facilities to verify that water treatment products meet the design, material and performance requirements.  NSF International is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).

NSF led the development of the American National Standards for all materials and products that treat or come in contact with drinking water. In 1990, the U.S. EPA replaced its own drinking water product advisory program with these NSF standards. Today, most plumbing codes require certification to NSF standards for pipes and plumbing components in commercial and residential buildings.