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News > Storm sewer versus sanitary sewer
Storm sewer versus sanitary sewer

Posted 3/14/2014   Updated 3/14/2014 Email story   Print story

    


by Barbara Legan
2nd Civil Engineer Squadron


3/14/2014 - BARKSDALE AIR FORCE BASE, La.  -- Do you know the difference between the Barksdale storm sewer system and the sanitary sewer system? Did you know the Air Force can be fined if you do not?

There is a system of drains here that collects storm water from the Red River watershed. It consists of ditches, creeks and bayous, but also concrete storm sewer drain pipes.

In the South, storm water is primarily rain; it includes melted snow from northern locations. The most important fact about storm water is that it is not treated before it becomes a part of the river system that supplies drinking water. To keep our storm water clean, do not store uncovered drums of oil that can overflow during storms and don't blow grass clippings with fertilizers and herbicides into the street where they can be picked up and carried in the storm water runoff.

The other system, the sanitary sewer system, is connected to sinks, bath tubs, toilets and vehicle wash racks. This sanitary sewer system is treated by the Bossier City Wastewater plant. This is why mop-water is poured into toilets or sinks (never outside in the grass) and why vehicles and equipment must be washed at proper facilities that trap oil/greasy residues and soap.

Storm water on Barksdale is analyzed for pollutants. Careless use and storage of materials and waste can result in Clean Water Act violations.

The Storm Water Program is part of the Environmental Management System program. The goals of EMS are to continually improve, minimize negative impacts to the environment and ensure that regulations are met. By understanding the difference between the two water systems, you can help us meet our EMS goals.



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