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Advanced Investigations/Investigative Monitoring

Remediation of improper discharges to waters of the State or to a County drainage system is the responsibility of the local units of government. Wayne County can provide support services and/or complete services to assist in locating the source of illicit discharges and its remediation should they be requested by the local community. This may entail:

A) Inspection of "Waters of the State" and/or Outfall Surveys: Wayne County is not required to "walk" the waters of the state. Many communities, however, have committed to investigating "each outfall" in their community as part of their General Storm Water Permit. Some communities have determined that this requirement is best addressed by walking the waters of the State. WQMD can provide this service for a fee. Products of this effort may include inspection program planning and design, outfall locations using the global positioning system (GPS)., digital photographs of outfalls, and outfall water quality sampling results. Similarly, WQMD can assist with and/or design and implement an outfall water quality monitoring plan. Outfall monitoring plans can be implemented to routinely monitor community storm water outfalls for a variety of parameters (e.g., bacteria, nutrients, etc.) to identify priority/problem areas for further illicit discharge elimination investigations and/or to determine the success of previous illicit discharge elimination efforts.

B) Investigations in municipally owned sewer systems: This service provides assistance to local communities by locating and/or narrowing down the specific source(s) of an illicit discharge to either to a specific facility/property or a specific section of storm sewer pipe. Visual inspection and water quality monitoring is perform within storm sewer manholes in an effort to trace the source of an illicit discharge up through the storm sewer system. Products of this effort include program planning and design, manhole locations using GPS, digital photos of manholes, assessment of manhole condition for maintenance purposes, and manhole water quality sampling results and analyses.

C) Failing Septic System Investigations: As described in Wayne County's General Storm Water Permit, the County developed an ordinance to provide for regular inspection of onsite sewage disposal systems (OSDS). This ordinance was promulgated on September 16, 1999 and requires inspection of septic systems at the time of property transfer. If a local community or citizen reports on a individual suspected failing septic system the Wayne County Environmental Health Division will investigate and take corrective action. If a community suspects that there are multiple failing septic systems in a broad geographic area, WQMD can assist with investigation/remediation of these larger failure areas. All WQMD field staff are certified onsite sewage disposal system (OSDS) inspectors.  

Wayne County's Onsite Sewage Disposal System Management Ordinance

For more information on the Water Quality Management Division's Investigative Monitoring services, please contact Noel Mullett at (734) 326-4486.