ESOHCAMP 11 days away
by AJ MUHS
56th Civil Engineer Squadron
Although storm water runoff is simply rainwater, it flows over land and can become a problem. When it picks up and carries sediment and contaminants from streets, rooftops and lawns, it carries them to surface water bodies and ground water through the soil causing contamination.
Storm water is a problem if it mixes with pollutants like fertilizer, oil, sediment, pet waste, soap, pesticides and other chemicals that are picked up by runoff then carried untreated to local water bodies. It is important to realize that all storm water entering a storm sewer system receives no treatment before re-entering the water cycle.
At Luke Air Force Base, most of the storm water runoff is collected in the concrete ditches that run along Litchfield Road and Northern Avenue. This runoff drains untreated into the Agua Fria River. Since people are the primary source of these pollutants, individuals can do a lot to protect local water bodies by being mindful of what should not be dumped down storm drains.
Most people are unaware that making a few changes in their daily lives will tremendously reduce the amount of pollutants they contribute to storm water runoff. Luke and the greater Phoenix metropolitan area continue to work together to promote storm water education throughout Arizona. Preventing storm water pollution is everyone’s responsibility.
Tips to minimize storm water pollutants:
• Monitor watering schedules and avoid overwatering
• Use lawn products sparingly, and follow the manufacturer’s suggested procedure
• Avoid the use of fertilizers, pesticides or herbicides just before, during or immediately after a storm or windy conditions
• Control loose soil and prevent it from washing into the storm drain
• Wash vehicles at a commercial car wash to prevent dirty, soapy water from entering the storm drain; or in the yard so the water infiltrates the ground
• Repair leaks and dispose of used auto fluids and batteries at designated drop-off or recycling locations
• Pet waste can be a source of pollution in water bodies where pets and children play
• Clean-up after pets and properly dispose of waste
Did You Know?
• One gallon of oil has the potential to contaminate up to one million gallons of water (source EPA)
• Sediment is the number one pollutant of the nation’s rivers and lakes (source EPA)
Additional storm water resources
Arizona storm water outreach-azstorm.org
Litchfield Park residents-www.litchfield-park.org/
For more information about storm water, call (623) 856-8490.