Did you know that when buildings, compacted soil, parking lots, and roads replace natural terrain they tend to prevent stormwater and melting snow from soaking into the ground? When developers and municipalities build these hard surfaces it creates a great deal of stormwater and snowmelt runoff. Unfortunately, stormwater and snowmelt runoff can cause a significant amount of flooding, pollution, and soil erosion. That is why new land developments are mandated to install drainage systems that not only catch excessive amounts of stormwater and melted snow, but also treat the water, and then release it.
The bottom line is that a combination of the Federal Clean Water Act, state regulations, and local ordinances demand it in order to help save the environment. That being stated, what happens to the typical stormwater management plan if the development is being built on steep terrain, or in an urban-based area with very little additional space for the drainage system? On top of the fact that developers typically need to maximize the economic advantages of the land instead of dedicating too much space to the components of the stormwater management system.
For example, large retention ponds, and or above ground detention basins are not applicable in a many situations. The solution may very well be a drainage system the actually stores the stormwater and melted snow underground. This holds especially true if you are limited by terrain related constraints, or limited to a small space. Underground stormwater and snowmelt detention systems capture the runoff in sizeable pipes or vaults that are buried underground. In essence, the runoff water flows underground through a pipe system that is typically connected to a catch basin.
The runoff water is trapped and then stored underground until it is released through the outlet pipe. The outlet pipe is designed to allow water to flow out in a controlled measure that is equal to pre-development flow rates. Essentially, the stormwater and snowmelt runoff are controlled as if the development did not exist. Typically speaking, stormwater management systems must have the ability to treat the pollutants in the stormwater and snowmelt runoff. An open bottom vault that is placed on a layer of sand provides a workable water filtration system.
That way, when the water is released it will not pollute the environment. An incredibly important factor that is often overlooked is the proper maintenance of the stormwater management system. This requires the use of vacuum trucks to clean out the dirt and debris that collect within the catch basins and open bottom vaults. When these devices become overfilled and or clogged it causes the stormwater and snowmelt runoff to back up out of the system.
When that occurs the excessive amount of water will flood the surrounding area. Although the stormwater management systems are designed to be tough and last for many years, there are delicate aspects to them as well. That means your stormwater management system should only be maintained by a professional environmental services company that specializes in cleaning these systems.
If you have any questions about stormwater management maintenance, or would like to schedule service we are happy to help. Jolin Paving & Excavating, Inc. is your New England connection for a vast variety of environmentally related services. Our company has been serving Boston Massachusetts, Southern NH, VT & ME as well as Northern CT & RI since 1952. Please Contact us to learn more today.