Quality Assurance Project Plan Illinois TMDL Watershed Sampling Page 37
4 Data Validation and Usability (Group D)
The U.S. EPA QAPP Guidance Group D Data Validation and Usability elements are
addressed in this section. The purpose of these elements is to determine if the data meet the
project’s Data Quality Objectives (validation) and to evaluate the data against the method,
procedural and/or contractual requirements (verification). Data validation, verification, and
usability assessment will be conducted as outlined in this QAPP.
The data generated from the sampling program will be subjected to a multi-tiered review
process described below. This process includes:
• A review of the data at the bench and field levels;
• A secondary review of field records by the Field Manager and analytical results within
the laboratory by the lab QA/QC Manager to verify the data against method and SOP
• A review of the verified data by the Project Manager or designee for reasonableness and
to identify obvious data anomalies;
• A validation by an objective third party, if necessary; and
• An assessment of the data by project team members for its usability to meet the project
4.1. Data Review, Verification and Validation (D1)
All environmental measurement data collected by project staff will be subjected to quality
control checks before being utilized in the interpretive reporting. A data generation system
that incorporates reviews at several steps in the process is designed to protect the integrity of
the data and reduce the number of data that do not meet the Data Quality Objectives (DQOs)
or the project goals. This section describes the requirements of each review step that will be
used in this project.
4.1.1. Data Verification Requirements
Data verification will occur at the field and laboratory level. This section describes the
requirements of the data verification.
Field Activities Data Verification. The Field Manager will be responsible for ensuring that
the samples are collected and handled according to the specified procedures. Sample
collection verification will include confirming that the samples were collected with the
proper equipment at the appropriate locations with the appropriate frequency. Sample
handling verification will include confirming that the samples were stored in the appropriate
containers with the correct preservative, that the samples were stored at the proper
temperature during transport from the field to the laboratory, and that all of the appropriate
information is logged on the chain-of-custody records.
Lab Activities Data Verification. The laboratory QA/QC Manager will be responsible for
verification of laboratory-generated data, although the laboratory SOPs for each method may
require some components of the verification to also be conducted at the bench level.
Laboratory verification will include assessing that the procedures used to generate the data
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