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Warsaw Stormwater

 When It Rains It Drains_thumb.png Most people would never dream of polluting our local lakes and streams. Unfortunately, people inadvertently do this every day. When stormwater falls on hard surfaces like rooftops, driveways, parking lots, streets or sidewalks, and other impervious surfaces, pollutants are picked up as the stormwater runs across those surfaces. The polluted stormwater is captured by City inlets, and the storm sewer system, then flows directly into our rivers, lakes, and streams. In Warsaw we have over 50 miles of storm pipe, much of which goes directly to a lake or other waterway.  End of Drain Pipe_thumb.jpg

This system of pipes is called our Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System or MS4. Communities in urbanized areas like Warsaw are required to obtain a National Pollution Discharge and Elimination System (NPDES) permit to control and reduce the pollution entering the MS4 as well as the waterways it discharges to.

 Man with Lawn Spreader in Lake_thumb_thumb.jpg These pollutants may include grass clippings, leaves, trash, pesticides from our yard, antifreeze, fertilizers, paint, gasoline, motor oil, animal waste and traces of metal that fall from our cars.  It may also include untreated sewage if someone’s septic system is not working properly or sediment (soil) from a construction project.  These are all pollutants that damage waterways and make water unhealthy for fish and people.

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Warsaw has over 2,200 storm drain inlets that channel water into over 250 public outfalls.
Most of these drain directly into a body of water.


As a part of an MS4 community, IDEM requires us to develop and implement a comprehensive pollution prevention program that includes 6 different components. 

  • Public education and outreach on stormwater impacts
  • Public involvement and participation
  • Illicit discharge detection and elimination
  • Construction site storm water runoff control
  • Post construction storm water management in new development and redevelopment
  • Pollution prevention/good housekeeping for municipal operations



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