Environmental Health

The Jefferson County Public Health Service is a partial unit department and works closely with the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) District Office in Watertown regarding Jefferson County environmental health priorities and concerns. The NYSDOH Watertown District Office enforces regulations that protect the public’s health, safety and environment related to food, water and indoor air quality in restaurants, camps, pools, beaches, hotels, motels and fairgrounds for Jefferson County. The NYSDOH Watertown District Office also investigates concerns about hazardous or unhealth conditions in and around homes and workplaces throughout Jefferson County.

Who to contact:

Watertown District Office

New York State Department of Health

Dulles State Office Building

317 Washington Street, 5th Floor

Watertown, NY 13601


NYSDOH Health & Safety in the Home, Workplace and Outdoors

JCPHS Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program page

FDA Alert, 03/06/24: Cinnamon Products Containing Elevated Levels of Lead

FDA Investigation of Elevated Lead Levels: Cinnamon Applesauce Pouches (November 2023)


Free Radon Test Kits are available at our office. Please call 315-786-3730 or click here for more information.

Radon is a naturally occurring, radioactive gas found in soil and rock that gets into the air you breath. It seeps into buildings through cracks in the foundation, walls, and joints. It can get into any type of building--homes, offices, and schools. The greatest risk for exposure is where you spend most of your time – usually at home.  Radon is the leading cause of lung cancer among people who do not smoke. You can't see, taste, or smell radon. The only way to know if your home has high radon levels is to test it.  Radon test kits can be purchased from a hardware store usually for $10 - $30.  Follow the test instructions to ensure the test is done correctly.  If you have high levels of radon in your home, call a  certified radon mitigator to install a system that will reduce the radon levels in your home.


Radon in Jefferson County

New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) both recommend radon mitigation when a radon test shows levels of 4 pCi/L or higher.  If the level is between 2 and 4 pCi/L you may also consider having your home fixed. Find a certified radon mitigator to install a system that will reduce the radon levels in your home.


NYSDOH Radon webpage

EPA Resources For Home Buyers and Sellers

American Cancer Society Radon & Cancer

Restoring and Testing Your Private Well After a Flood

After flooding, water from private wells may not be safe to drink. Private well owners should take steps to restore their private water supply. When a private water well has been flooded, the water in it may be contaminated with waterborne pathogens (germs) that can cause serious illness in humans and pets. If you believe that your well has been contaminated, stop using your well water for drinking and cooking purposes. 

Click here to learn how to restore & test your well.

Boil Water Advisory

Boiling water is a very effective way to disinfect water contaminated by microorganisms (germs or pathogens) and make it ready to drink. The public may be directed to boil their water if something occurs that could contaminate drinking water. Common reasons for a boil water notice include loss of pressure in the water distribution system, loss of disinfection, and other water quality concerns caused by other events such as water line breaks, power outages and floods.  Click here to learn more about boil water notices.