Pollution Prevention for Business
Property owners are responsible and liable for all pollutants leaving their property. This includes stormwater which enters the storm drain, also known as catch basins, that is contaminated. Common pollutants generated by businesses such as automotive and food and beverage establishment include used motor oil, antifreeze, fertilizers and pesticides, sand, dirt, litter, paint, cooking oil and cigarette butts. Boston Water and Sewer Commission (BWSC) has prepared the attached brochure, Stormwater Management for Businesses, which provides suggestions for these businesses to prevent pollution from getting onto the streets, into storm drains and ultimately into our rivers and harbor.
Some of these suggestions include:
- Proper disposal of all pollutants. If you are unsure as to how to dispose of certain material, consult the manufacturer or contact the Massachusetts Hazardous Waste Hotline for Businesses at 617-292-5898.
- Provide neighborhood amenities. Place trash receptacles in highly visible areas, including receptacles for cigarette butts.
- Keep public areas clean. Sweep outdoor areas and dispose of debris into trash and not into a storm drain. Hose down areas and direct the runoff away from the storm drain. Dispose of leaf litter into the trash and not into a storm drain.
- Maintain solid waste containers. Locate these containers away from storm drains. Have the container cleaned on a regular basis and store adequate spill equipment on-site to clean up spills and releases.
- Disposal of wash water. Never pour wash water onto a parking lot or into storm drains. Wash water should be disposed of into a janitorial sink or a floor drain that is property connected to the sanitary sewer system.
- Installation and disposal for restaurant owners. Install and maintain grease traps and properly dispose of cooking oil. Never pour grease or cooking oil into sinks, floor drains, solid waste container or into a storm drain.
If you see a storm drain that is clogged with debris, report it to BWSC for cleaning (617-989-7000).
Dumping any material into the storm drains is illegal with fines up to $5,000 per day of violation. If you observe someone dumping into a storm drain, report it immediately to BWSC at 617-989-7000.