PITTSBURGH-The Community College of Allegheny County has become
an approved school for plumbing backflow testing under the American
Society of Sanitary Engineers (ASSE) International.
CCAC, a major regional provider of plumbing backflow training
and testing, has upgraded its local certification, which was
previously aligned with ASSE national standards, to the more
stringent ASSE International certification. The latter is becoming
the industry standard.
In an effort to protect our public water system, the 72 water
suppliers in Allegheny County have begun outsourcing backflow
inspection and regulation to management firms specializing in
backflow. These firms have standardized on ASSE international
certification for testers and repair technicians, causing a demand
for the new certification.
There is a waiting list of 50 students for the three-day, 1.5
credit re-certification course, which begins on June 18. The class,
which can accommodate 10 students, will be offered repeatedly. The
initial five-day, three credit certification course will be offered
in the fall. Students will train at an extensive backflow lab at
CCAC's West Hills Center.
According to Mary Lou Kennedy, interim president of North Hills
Campus and West Hills Center, "As a recognized leader in
workforce training, CCAC offers niche classes providing important
certification to plumbers and specialists."
More than 50% of the certified testers in Southwestern
Pennsylvania were certified at CCAC, and about 1,000 CCAC-certified
backflow testers return to West Hills Center every three years for
re-certification. All testing will be done by an ASSE certified
"This is important because we have such a large share of the
tester market, and it's essential to maintain the safety of our
public water supply," said Ron Logreco, assistant dean at
West Hills Center, who directed the upgrade of the program.
"We're striving to get above a 90-percent pass rate."