Dry Weather Field Screening as an Indicator for Urban Drainage System Rehabilitation

by Hans J. Peterson, SEC Donohue Inc, Indianapolis, United States,
William R. Grout, SEC Donohue Inc, Indianapolis, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Water Resources Planning and Management: Saving a Threatened Resource—In Search of Solutions


In November 1990, EPA published final rules governing National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Permit Application Regulations for stormwater discharges. The rules affect municipal separate storm sewer systems serving populations of 100,000 or more. The purpose of the regulations is to identify and eliminate illicit discharges and to establish stormwater management programs that will improve urban water quality. A major task associated with complying with these regulations was field screening of major outfalls for dry weather flow (DWF) and potential illicit connections. Outfalls found to have DWF were field tested with colorometric test kits for pH, chlorine, surfactants, phenols and copper. These constituents were selected by EPA as indicators of illicit discharges. Field screening results for two communities show that although DWF occurrence varies by community and by time of year, the occurrence of DWF is often associated with an illicit discharge. Field screening programs can be used to effectively identify rehabilitation needs to eliminate illicit discharge sources.

Subject Headings: Drainage systems | Urban areas | Rehabilitation | Environmental Protection Agency | Municipal water | Water pollution | Water discharge | Water quality

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