An abandoned well is any water well that is no longer used to supply water, or is in such a state of disrepair that the well has the potential for transmitting contaminants into an aquifer, or
otherwise threatens the public health or safety.
Underground water is constantly moving. It flows through pores in the soil and through cracks and crevices in the rock. As water moves, it picks up pollutants with which it comes in contact.
Abandoned wells are a hazard to the water we all drink, even for those who use municipal water.
If a well is left unsealed, the natural underground aquifer can become polluted. If the shaft of the well is left open, or the well casing cracks and deteriorates, pollutants such as sewage, pesticides,
fertilizers, or other hazardous materials can seep into underground water making it harmful to drink.
Most states require that abandoned wells be properly sealed within 30 days of connection to a public water supply or notification from the health department. A permit is generally required.