The “National Field Manual for the Collection of Water-Quality Data” (NFM) provides guidelines and procedures for U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) personnel who collect data used to assess the quality of the Nation’s surface-water and groundwater resources. This chapter, NFM A1, provides an overview of preparations for water sampling, which includes site reconnaissance, project work plans, quality-assurance plans, basic equipment and supplies needed for fieldwork, safety precautions, and planning for data management. It updates and supersedes USGS Techniques of Water-Resources Investigations, book 9, chapter A1, version 2.0, by F.D. Wilde.
Before 2017, the NFM chapters were released in the USGS Techniques of Water-Resources Investigations series. Effective in 2018, new and revised NFM chapters are being released in the USGS Techniques and Methods series; this series change does not affect the content and format of the NFM. More information is in the general introduction to the NFM (USGS Techniques and Methods, book 9, chapter A0) at https://doi.org/10.3133/tm9A0. The authoritative current versions of NFM chapters are available in the USGS Publications Warehouse at https://pubs.er.usgs.gov/. Comments, questions, and suggestions related to the NFM can be addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org.