In 1994, EPA initiated the study of the benefits and costs of wellhead protection (WHP). The purpose of the study was to compare the cost of local wellhead protection to the cost of contamination which could have potentially been avoided as a wellhead protection program is caried out. Additionally, the information in these case studies is intended to assist local decisionmakers assess the value, cost and feasibility of implementing wellhead protection in their communities. While the results reported below for the seven communities are neither exhaustive nor statistically representative of all communities, they do provide an indication and present the potential extent and range of benefits for a prevention program to protect community drinking water sources. EPA also was interested in collecting observations on the study communities' experiences in responding to contamination incidents and in developing and implementing WHPPs.