Orange County Utilities COVID-19 Wastewater Sampling Program

Orange County is actively participating in the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Health and Human Services (HHS) National Wastewater Surveillance System. The program monitors wastewater from water reclamation facilities across the United States for concentrations of SARS-CoV-2 RNA. The data collected by the program helps the CDC and local authorities better understand the spread of the virus in communities. The concentrations tested reflect both symptomatic and asymptomatic residents, alerting participating organizations to spikes in infections four to ten days before positive case numbers would reflect changes within the community.

Three panel photo sequence of a man sampling wastewater. He’s wearing an Orange County Utilities polo shirt, a disposable mask, and a plastic face shield.

Wastewater Sampling Data Dashboard

Orange County’s water reclamation facilities serve approximately 870,000 people. Although sampling results will fluctuate as infected individuals go in and out of the virus shedding cycle, the results provide an early warning of total infections in the areas served by the water reclamation facilities.

As of October 18, 2021, the Eastern Water Reclamation Facility (EWRF) reports 479,086 remnants per liter – a 33% decrease over September 16. The Southern Water Reclamation Facility (SWRF) reports 276,946 remnants per liter – a 54% decrease over September 16. The Northwest Water Reclamation Facility (NWRF) reports 208,439 remnants per liter – a 75% decrease over September 16. 74% of Orange County residents 12 years or older have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Map of Orange County, Florida Wastewater Service Areas. The Northwest Service Area serves unincorporated Orange County from near Apopka, extending south to just Chase Road just south of Lake Butler. The Northwest Water Reclamation Facility is located east of FL-429 and south of FL-414. The South Service Area serves unincorporated Orange County, beginning south of Tilden Road, moving east to Lake Conway, and south to the county border. The South Water reclamation Facility is located off Sand Lake Road, west of Florida’s Turnpike. The Eastern Service Area serves unincorporated Orange County from Lake Conway, extending to eastwardly to the northern, eastern, and southern county borders. The Eastern Water Reclamation Facility is located of Alafaya Trail, south of FL-408.

About the Wastewater Sampling Program