The following tips are designed to assist local officials with planning and implementing a floor drain control (regulation or bylaw) as required by 310 CMR 22.21(a)(8).
- Identify the location of your town's drinking water supply protection areas. A copy of the Zone II(s) can obtained from your Town's public water supplier or by contacting MassDEP.
- Target the scope of your regulation:
- Which facilities in town will be affected? Industrial, commercial and municipal facilities that store or process hazardous material or hazardous waste and do not have a MassDEP groundwater discharge permit or connect to the local sewer district.
- What area(s) in town should the regulation cover? The floor drain requirement, under 310 CMR 22.21(2)(a)(8), must cover the MassDEP approved Zone II recharge areas. However, MassDEP recommends that communities adopt a town-wide control whenever possible.
- How do I locate facilities with floor drains? If there are numerous facilities in your community, it may take some time to locate all of them. Begin by focusing on locating establishments within the Zone II(s). Most Boards of Health and fire departments require businesses to provide a list of hazardous materials stored or waste generated on-site. Other resources for locating facilities include the local zoning map (which identifies commercial and industrial areas), the tax assessor's maps (which provide addresses), the building/plumbing inspectors (who often know business locations) and MassDEP's Source Water Assessment and Protection (SWAP) reports.
- Coordinate the local inspection program with the town's water supplier, fire chief, building inspector, plumbing inspector and local publicly owned treatment works.
- Identify the local official or agent responsible for implementing and enforcement; this could be an official such as the health agent, building inspector, or plumbing inspector.
- Consider adopting a hazardous materials bylaw or health regulation. They complement floor drain controls and provide the town with a comprehensive approach for addressing hazardous materials and discharges at existing and proposed facilities.
- Prioritize inspections. If the floor drain control applies to the entire town, focus on the Zone II areas first and phase in the other areas over time.
- Inspections should serve as the primary vehicle to implement the regulation. When conducting inspections:
- Provide each facility owner or operator with a map indicating the location of their facility with respect to the drinking water well and Zone II area(s).
- Determine if floor drains are present in the hazardous material or hazardous waste process area or storage area of the facility. If so, determine the ultimate discharge point of the drain:
- Sewer connection: Verify the discharge of a drain to the municipal sanitary sewer line by either seeing "as-built" diagrams or town or state sewer connection records, or through the use of field efforts such as a dye test.
- Holding Tanks: Verify the connection of a drain to a holding tank by seeing MassDEP holding tank permit records. Oil/water separators are designed to have a discharge. Unless specifically converted with MassDEP approval, they are not holding tanks.
- If an oil/water separator is in use (they must be used by some facilities such as auto repair garages with drains tied to the sanitary sewer line), determine the current maintenance pumping schedule for it.
- Assist facilities in complying with the regulation and provide them with information on how to best manage hazardous materials.
- If a facility claims to have a valid Ground Water Discharge Permit, verify this by contacting the MassDEP regional office .
- Facilities should obtain appropriate permit applications from MassDEP.
NOTE: The permit program is currently in forbearance and will be replaced by a Certificate program; the facility should contact the MassDEP Regional office and ask for the Industrial Wastewater group for direction. Prior permits included:
- New Holding Tank Permit
- Conversion of Separator to Holding Tank Permit
- Sewer Connection Permit
For more information on floor drains, contact the MassDEP Underground Injection Control Program at 617-292-5859 or http://www.mass.gov/eea/agencies/massdep/water/drinking/shallow-injection-well-closure-q-and-a-summary-for-the-.html .