Nov 1, 2017

Posted by | Comments Off on How Does Storm Water Become Polluted

How Does Storm Water Become Polluted

What You Need To Know About How Storm Water Becomes Polluted

Whenever it rains, the storm waters run off sidewalks, roof tops, yards, parking lots, fields and streets carrying a significant amount of pollutants along with it. The catch basins or storm drains have been designed in such a way to divert the rainwater away so that it does not reach the developed areas as well as to prevent the occurrence of flooding. This is not connected to the treatment plants or sanitary-sewer systems. Today we have an expert in the area from a Los Angeles based consulting company that give us a better understanding of this environemental hazard. You can find our more about the comapny by visiting thier website at

James Turner of SWPP California, a storm water pollutions plan consutlant  mentions, storm water that is untreated along with the pollutants that it carries flows into the storm drains which then flow into rivers. He mentioned this is the type of pollution that can often lead to destruction of aquatic-life habitats, wildlife and fish, loss of aesthetic value along with threats such as bacteria and pathogens to the health of the public.

How Does Storm Water Become Polluted?

Storm water in most cases becomes polluted from the daily activities which people are often not even aware of. The storm water becomes polluted when debris and trash gets into the storm drains, the lawn-care activities like the improper usage of pesticides and fertilizers, failing to clean up leaves and grass clippings, washing cars on a pavement or driveway which allows a way for the dirty wastewater and soap to flow into the storm drains. 

Other common ways that the storm water becomes polluted is from the incorrect maintenance of cars that result in antifreeze and oil leaks. Or waste that comes from wildlife and pets that lead to pathogens and bacteria that contaminate the water along with the incorrect disposal and storage of common household chemicals. To avoid this, the public should be making an effort to ensure they store chemicals in the correct way, to buy wisely as well as transport the unwanted household-chemicals to a hazardous-waste collection center in order to decrease contamination to the storm water.

Where Does The Storm Water Go?

Storm water typically flows directly into the various storm drains which are then directly conveyed into our rivers.

Why Is This A Problem?

Unfortunately storm water typically carries very high concentrations of toxic pollutants. This often results in devastating effects on wildlife, fish and aquatic habitats along with threats to the health of the public.


Here are a few guidelines for wash water disposal and outdoor-cleaning activities:

•Do- Dispose of smaller amounts of the wash-water after cleaning plazas, sidewalks, and building exteriors onto unpaved or landscaped surfaces. This discharge won’t cause nuisance problems or flooding or flow into the storm drains.

•Do Not – Discharge of large amounts of wash water onto soil or landscaped areas whereby the water can run onto the street and land up in the storm drains. This wastewater as a result of exterior cleaning should be pumped into sewer lines.

•Do- Check with the requirements and policies of a local agency in regards to the disposal of waste water.  Water as a result from a variety of the outdoor-cleaning activities is often acceptable to be disposed of through sewer systems. Find out more about you local regulations by visiting James Turner company website

Read More