PREPARING YOUR WELL AND SEPTIC SYSTEM FOR FLOODING
With the potential of flooding from our recent winter storm and valley snow accumulation, please visit the links below for information on what you can do to prepare and respond to a flooding event regarding your well and septic system.
PREPARING FOR FLOODING
Flood waters can infiltrate and contaminate private wells, springs, and cisterns. It is up to the owner to make sure the water is safe for consumption and domestic uses. After flooding, you should have the well disinfected and tested to make sure it’s safe.
A number of precautions can be taken as soon as a flood warning is issued.
- Move chemicals or hazardous materials above flood level to lessen the chance of spill or contamination.
- Turn off power to underground storage tank systems.
- Take a product inventory and water level reading to help account for possible product loss of storage tanks.
- Secure all tank openings and make sure caps and other components are in good condition.
Protecting Your Well Before the Flood
WHAT TO DO AFTER THE FLOOD
Safe disposal of wastewater is essential to protect human health. Flooding can cause septic tanks to fill causing sewage to back up. If you suspect your wastewater system has been compromised by flood waters, contact your county health department and a licensed septic system installer or a licensed plumber to have it assessed. Do not use or flush your toilets until you know that the septic tank and associated sewer pipes are intact; otherwise, wastewater could flow back up into the house through the toilet, shower, bath and laundry drains.
If the drain field area is under water, it’s important to try and divert the water away from the drain field. If an ice dam is causing water to pool over the drain field or flow toward the drain field, remove the ice dam so water may flow away from the drain.
Flooded Septic Tank
Flood Clean-up Health Tips from the Department of Public Health and Human Services
Your Well: What to Do After the Flood