Washington County is mandated by Federal law to establish an illicit discharge program. Illicit Discharges often include wastes and wastewater from non-stormwater sources. Illicit discharges enter the system through either direct connections (e.g., wastewater piping either mistakenly or deliberately connected to the storm drains) or indirect connections (e.g., infiltration from cracked sanitary systems, spills collected by drain outlets or used oil dumped directly into a drain.) The Division of Environmental Management is responsible for establishing the program.
While the wastewater that leaves your home is piped to a septic system or a treatment facility that cleans it before it is released into waterways, waste that goes into storm drains is untreated and goes into local rivers or streams that flow into the Chesapeake Bay. Pollutant levels from these illicit discharges have been shown in EPA studies to be high enough to significantly degrade receiving water quality and threaten aquatic, wildlife and human health.
If you see anything other than stormwater going onto County road surfaces or into storm drains in the County, please report it immediately by calling the Washington County Division of Environmental Management at (240) 313-2600, or by using the form below.
Environmental Management Menu