If you witness spills or any suspicious discharges to Olympia's stormwater system, streets, ditches, streams, and wetlands, please call our Spills Hotline. Spills could include things like gasoline, sewage, chemicals, paint, oily sheens, foam, algae blooms, or muddy water from construction sites.
We can use your help!
Citizens reporting spills helps to keep our creeks and Budd Inlet clean. Many City storm drains eventually drain into Puget Sound. It is economically infeasible to have pollution inspectors everywhere 24 hours a day - but you can help!
We rely on you!
Report sewer spills, or suspicious discharge to the stormwater system, by contacting us directly:
- If it is a sewer spill, or a potential threat to public health or the environment, call 360.753.8333 any time! The line is answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and you can choose to remain anonymous.
- If it is a stormwater spill, and doesn't appear to be an imminent threat, call our Environmental Code Enforcement group at 360.753.8346 or send us an e-mail. On evenings and weekends, 24-hour messaging is available.
Things to look for:
The following are good practices to follow for reporting a potential pollution problem and for providing information that will be helpful to the follow-up investigator.
- Take good notes: A good set of notes will provide a complete and accurate set of facts for others. Use the following as a checklist when reporting a suspicious event:
- Location of spill.
- Time/date of spill. Does it occur at a certain time? For example, every day at 6:00 am?
- Could you determine the source?
- Is it draining into a body of water, or into a catch basin or grate?
- How does the water look; is there a sheen?
- Do you observe any dead fish?
- Are there any odors?
- Are there any other witnesses?
- Take photographs: Photographic evidence can be very valuable in establishing the presence of pollution, especially where erosion problems. exist. When taking photographs, remember to record the time, date, and location that the photo was taken. Wherever possible, try to include an established landmark so that the location of the pollution problem cannot be challenged. Digital photos are very helpful to investigators in understanding the location and severity of certain discharges.
- About taking samples: DON'T! Because of the potential for personal injury from contact with dangerous chemicals or entry into unsafe environments, sample collection should be left to local authorities.
- Things to watch for: Be careful - safety first! Do not attempt anything dangerous. Do not sample unknown liquids.