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A stormwater drain is an important part of your facility, ensuring safety and efficiency at your site by removing excess water. But drain protection is important, too — solutions like storm drain blockers and a range of different best practices can keep your drains working at their best.
So, what should you and your team do to keep your stormwater drains functioning at the highest level in the long term? Take a look at some of these essential best practices you can adopt at your worksite.
Deploy Drain Protection to Avoid Blockages
If your stormwater drain becomes clogged or blocked with sediment, it simply will not do the job. With this in mind, you need to deploy hardware to protect the drain and keep any foreign objects out of the stormwater discharge.
Storm drain blockers are ideal for this. These blockers can either filter the stormwater to prevent solid objects of a certain size from entering the storm drain or close off the drain altogether to prevent the system from becoming overwhelmed. Water can then be directed to a stormwater capture solution or a temporary containment tank.
This type of drain protection affords you and your team more control over the water flowing into your storm drain. Remember that the storm drain is not just a receptacle to carry contaminated water away from your facility. Instead, it is designed to help your business remain safe, fully operational, and compliant with all regulations.
Build Reinforced Drainage Channels to Prevent Erosion
Many factors influence the eroding power of stormwater. For example, the gradient of the slope the water must run across, the slope’s length, and the slope’s shape all contribute to the forces applied to the surface. Another factor is the suspended material within the water itself. Suspended particles can accelerate erosion, causing significant damage to drainage channels.
This leaves facility developers in a difficult position. They can design drainage channels to distribute the force of the water across a wider area, or they can choose to direct water into a central channel. Directing water in this way will concentrate the erosion force in the center of the channel, reducing the surface area that comes into contact with the water. However, this means that erosion will happen far more quickly in the concentrated area of the channel.
The fact of the matter is this — erosion will occur no matter how the drainage channel is designed and oriented. To mitigate this, your team will need to build drainage channels and ducts using reinforced materials that resist erosion. You will also need to assess and repair drainage channels when required to prevent stormwater from seeping through into the water table.
Eliminate Pollutants or Contaminants in Drainage Channels
Any spillages of toxic materials into storm channels, culverts, or drains will need to be cleaned up immediately. Residual pollutants and contaminants can cause significant problems with stormwater and may result in the release of hazardous chemicals and pathogens. This will lead to fines for the business due to regulatory compliance failures and potential disasters for local communities and ecosystems.
Even if this kind of spillage does not occur, your teams will still need to be aware of potential contamination. When stormwater flows through an industrial site, pathogens and contaminants may become suspended or dissolved into the water. It is the responsibility of the facility owner to make sure that these pollutants and contaminants are removed before the water is discharged.
It may be necessary to temporarily store water in a containment tank before it is released. This will allow you to treat the water before it is discharged, making it easier to remain compliant with all relevant regulations in your area and in your industry.
Adopt a Regular Inspection Schedule
Your teams will need to inspect your stormwater drains regularly to ensure there is no blockage or damage. These inspections should be carried out systematically to ensure that none of your drains are allowed to fall into disrepair.
Information you gain from this assessment will help you understand more about your drains and when they need to be serviced. Regular and timely servicing will prevent major problems from arising within your infrastructure. The inspection schedule will also ensure that you spot any unexpected issues, such as blockages or damage to the drainage system, so that they can be quickly put right.
Test Stormwater Drain Effluent
Unfortunately, many types of pollutants and chemicals can find their way into your stormwater drain. If these chemicals are permitted to pass through the drain and enter the local water table, this can be problematic. You could find that this causes significant damage to local ecosystems and even puts human life at risk. Regulatory bodies may also impose fines and penalties for offenders in these cases.
Different types of industrial operations can result in various pollutants. For example, using pesticides or lubrication on the site can result in the release of cadmium and chromium, which are then washed into the storm drain effluent. Chromium by itself may also be released by dyes or paints that are left exposed to stormwater. Meanwhile, copper may be released by plumbing materials or vehicles operating on the premises.
It’s important to stay in control when it comes to stormwater pollutants. Testing the effluent released into the local water table helps achieve this. If your teams discover the presence of harmful chemicals, you have the knowledge required to put this right.
Drain Protection and Stormwater Best Practices Keep Your Business One Step Ahead
It’s always better to be proactive when it comes to managing your site and maintaining your infrastructure. Drain protection, storm drain blockers, and other solutions and best practices help you do precisely this — preventing issues that could become significant further down the line.