Storm Water Management Program

To Report a Spill - Call the Spill Hotline:
Daytime: 8:00am to 5:00pm - call 425.295.0500
After Hours: call King County 24-Hour dispatch at 425.295.0700

Upcoming Events


Water Smart Workshops
Join Seattle Tilth for a free workshop on water conservation and stormwater management best practices Wednesday, October 5th from 6:30-8:30 at Sammamish Plateau Water and Sewer District. For schedule and registration information, download the Water Smart Workshop poster.

Surface and Storm Water Open House

The City of Sammamish is making some important decisions about protecting, enhancing and managing our storm and surface water systems. Come learn about storm and surface water issues, share your thoughts and enjoy interactive family-friendly activities!

The open house will be held on Wednesday, September 21, from 5-7 pm in the City Hall Council Chambers. Come and stop by during your visit to the Farmers Market!

Auto Leaks Workshop

Does your car drip? Ever wondered if a ‘spot’ on the ground came from your car? Want to learn how to properly maintain your car?

Join the experts at participating Certified Automotive Training Centers at a location near you for a FREE Auto Leaks workshop - a $125 value. Open to everyone in Puget Sound. At this workshop you’ll:

  • Get a free professional inspection from a certified automotive instructor.
  • Learn how to identify and prevent leaks.
  • Receive tips on repairing minor common leaks.
  • Learn preventive maintenance.
  • Leave the class with a FREE Vehicle Maintenance Check Kit and the confidence to talk to your mechanic.

Watch our video and hear what past participants have to say:

Workshop Locations:

  • Renton Technical College: Saturdays, 1 pm – 5 pm
  • South Seattle Community College: Saturdays, 9 am – 1 pm
  • West Seattle High School Automotive Center: Saturdays, 9 am – 1 pm
  • Shoreline Community College: Coming Soon!

One hour in class session and you are in the shop for the rest of the time.

Hurry now! Space is limited. To register go to: www.fixcarleaks.org

These free workshops are brought to you by the Department of Ecology and Seattle Public Utilities.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is polluted runoff?

Water from rain and melting snow either seeps into the ground or “runs off” to lower areas, making its way into streams, lakes and other water bodies. On its way, runoff water can pick up and carry many substances that pollute water.

Some - like pesticides, fertilizers, oil and soap – are harmful in any quantity. Others – like sediment from construction, bare soil, or agricultural land, or pet waste, grass clippings and leaves – can harm creeks, rivers and lakes in sufficient quantities.

In addition to rain and snowmelt, various human activities like watering, car washing, and malfunctioning septic tank can also put water onto the land surface. Here, it can also create runoff that carries pollutants to creeks, rivers and lakes.

Polluted runoff generally happens anywhere people use or alter the land. For example, in developed areas, none of the water that falls on hard surfaces like roofs, driveways, parking lots or roads can seep into the ground. These impervious surfaces create large amounts of runoff that picks up pollutants. The runoff flows from gutters and storm drains to streams. Runoff not only pollutes' but erodes streambanks. The mix of pollution and eroded dirt muddies the water and causes problems downstream.

What is Nonpoint Source Pollution?

This is another term for polluted runoff and other sources of water pollution that are hard to pinpoint. The term “nonpoint source pollution” comes from the federal Clean Water Act of 1987. There, it is used as a catch-all for all kinds of water pollution that are not well-defined discharges (point sources) from wastewater plants or industries.

What causes polluted stormwater runoff?

Polluted stormwater runoff generally happens anywhere people use or alter the land. People going about their daily lives are the number one source of stormwater pollutants. Most people are unaware of how they impact water quality. Some common examples include over fertilizing lawns, excessive pesticide use, not picking up pet waste, using salt or fertilizer to de-ice driveways, letting oil drip out of their vehicles and littering. Developed areas in general, with their increased runoff, concentrated numbers of people and animals, construction and other activities, are a major contributor to NPS pollution, as are agricultural activities. Other contributors include forest harvesting activities, roadways, and malfunctioning septic systems.

Why do we need to manage stormwater and polluted runoff?

Polluted stormwater runoff is the number one cause of water pollution in Washington. In most cases in today, stormwater either does not receive any treatment before it enters our waterways or is inadequately treated.

Polluted water creates numerous costs to the public and to wildlife. As the saying goes, “we all live downstream.” Communities that use surface water for their drinking supply must pay much more to clean up polluted water than clean water.

Polluted water hurts the wildlife in creeks, streams, rivers and lakes. Dirt from erosion, also called sediment, covers up fish habitats and fertilizers can cause too much algae to grow, which also hurts wildlife by using up the oxygen they need to survive. Soaps hurt fish gills and fish skin, and other chemicals damage plants and animals when they enter the water.

The quantity of stormwater is also a problem. When stormwater falls on hard surfaces like roads, roofs, driveways and parking lots, it cannot seep into the ground, so it runs off to lower areas. To give you an idea of the difference a hard surface makes, consider the difference between one inch of rain falling onto a meadow and a parking lot. The parking lot sheds 16 times the amount of water that a meadow does!

Because more water runs off hard surfaces, developed areas can experience local flooding. The high volume of water also causes streams banks to erode and washes the wildlife that live there downstream.

How are stormwater and runoff “managed”?

“Best management practices” is a term used to describe different ways to keep pollutants out of runoff and to slow down high volumes of runoff.

Preventing pollution from entering water is much more affordable than cleaning polluted water! Educating state residents about how to prevent pollution from entering waterways is one best management practice. Laws that require people and businesses involved in earth disturbing activities --like construction and agriculture -- to take steps to prevent erosion are another way to prevent stormwater pollution. There are also laws about litter, cleaning up after pets and dumping oil or other substances into storm drains.

Education and laws are just two best management practice examples. Some BMPs are constructed to protect a certain area. Some are designed to slow down stormwater, others help reduce the pollutants already in it – there are also BMPs that do both of these things.

Detention ponds, built to temporarily hold water so it drains away slowly, fill up quickly after a rainstorm and allow solids like sediment and litter to settle at the pond bottom. Then, they release the water slowly. These ponds are one constructed BMP example. Green roofs, storm drain grates, filter strips, sediment fences and permeable paving are other examples.

Why all the recent fuss about stormwater?

The federal Clean Water Act requires large and medium sized towns across the United States to take steps to reduce polluted stormwater runoff. The law was applied in two phases. The first phase addressed large cities. The second phase, often referred to as ”Phase II,” requires medium and small cities, fast growing cities and those located near sensitive waters to take steps to reduce stormwater. In Washington state, Phase II laws took effect in 2005.

These laws require cities to do five things:
  1. Conduct outreach and education about polluted stormwater runoff.
  2. Provide opportunities for residents to participate and be involved in conversations and activities related to reducing polluted stormwater runoff

  3. Detect illicit discharges (e.g. straight piping or dumping)

  4. Control construction site runoff.

  5. Operations and Maintenance of post-construction Stormwater Facilities.

If it only affects streams and creeks, why should I care?

Streams and creeks feed into rivers, lakes and the ocean. We all drink water, so we are all affected when our water is polluted. When water treatment costs rise, the price of drinking water goes up. If you like to fish, swim or boat, you may have heard or been affected by advisories warning you not to swim, fish or boat in a certain area because of unhealthy water or too much algae. Shellfish like clams and oysters cannot be harvested from polluted waters, so anyone that enjoys these foods or makes a living from the shellfish industry is affected. Money made from tourism and water recreation can also be impacted, as are businesses and home flooded by stormwater runoff. When we pollute our water, everyone is affected!

What can I do to reduce the amount of stormwater pollution I contribute?

If you own a car, maintain it so it does not leak oil or other fluids. Be sure to wash it on the grass or at a car wash so the dirt and soap do not flow down the driveway and into the nearest storm drain. Better yet, wash your car at a commercial car wash, where the wash water is recycled and eventually flows to a waste water treatment plant.

If you own a yard, do not over fertilize your grass. Never apply fertilizers or pesticides before a heavy rain. If fertilizer falls onto driveways or sidewalks, sweep it up instead of hosing it away. Mulch leaves and grass clippings and place leaves in the yard at the curb, not in the street. Doing this keeps leaves out of the gutter, where they can wash into the nearest storm drain. Turn your gutter downspouts away from hard surfaces, seed bare spots in your yard to avoid erosion and consider building a rain garden in low-lying areas of your lawn

If you have a septic system, maintain it properly by having it pumped every three to five years. If it is an older system, be sure it can still handle the volume placed on it today. Never put chemicals down septic systems, they can harm the system and seep into the groundwater.

Pet owners should pick up after their pets and dispose of pet waste in the garbage.

Keep lawn and household chemicals tightly sealed and in a place where rain cannot reach them. Dispose of old or unwanted chemicals at household hazardous waste collections sites or events.

Never put anything in a storm drain.

Don’t litter.

How else can I help reduce stormwater pollution in my area?

Participate in the next stream or beach cleanup in your area. Storm drain marking events – where the destination of storm water is clearly marked on the drain – are a fun way to let your neighbors know the storm drain is only for rain. Attend public hearings or meetings on the topic so you can express your concerns. Report stormwater violations when you spot them to your local government (425-295-0500) or keep learning about polluted stormwater runoff and tell a friend!

What is NPDES?

NPDES Phase II Municipal Stormwater Permit Program

The NPDES Phase II Municipal Stormwater Permit for Western Washington was issued by the Department of Ecology in January of 2007 and went into effect in February. The permit requires that all affected municipalities create and implement a Stormwater Management Program (SWMPR) which addresses five required program elements:

1) Public Education and Outreach
2) Public Involvement and Participation
3) Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination
4) Construction Site Run-Off
5) Operations and Maintenance of Post Construction Stormwater Facilities.

While the Permit went into effect in February of 2007, the permit itself phases program implementation requirements out over the next four years.

What is NPDES?

The National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) is a federal permit that regulates stormwater and wastewater discharges to waters of the State. While it is a federal permit, the regulatory authority has been passed to Washington State Department of Ecology (DOE).

What is Stormwater?

Stormwater - It's not just rainwater turned loose.

Stormwater is generally rain and melting snow that runs off surfaces that cannot readily absorb water. These surfaces include rooftops, pavement, compacted gravel lots, and even frozen ground. As it flows towards receiving waters such as streams, lakes, rivers or infiltrates down into the aquifer it picks up pollutants. These pollutants are such things as sediments, airborne dust, pet waste, oil, grease, fertilizers, chemicals, litter and whatever else we have left on the ground or poured down our drains and grates that can be carried or dissolved in water. Stormwater pollution is caused by all of us. Some of it can be treated. Most of it must simply be prevented.

What are stormwater problems?

Stormwater runoff causes pollution, erosion and flooding problems. These problems occur because we altered the land and changed the way that water moves through the landscape.

What causes flooding problems?

As Sammamish grows and we build more rooftops, driveways, streets and other hard or impervious surfaces, the land’s capacity to soak up and carry away excess water decreases. As a result, conditions that might result in a flood once every 100 years in an undeveloped area can cause flooding every four or five years after development has covered the land with impervious surfaces.

What causes pollution problems?

As water from rain and melting snow runs across these hard surfaces and over lawns and gardens they pick up pollutants such as sediments, pet waste, oil, grease, pesticides, and fertilizers. Stormwater carries these contaminants to our streams, rivers, lakes, wetlands and our aquifer. More and dirtier stormwater runs off each year, but we have fewer and fewer options to deal with it. Since individual contributions to stormwater are small, it is hard to believe that we really impact the quality and quantity of stormwater entering our water systems. The cumulative and long-term effects have a substantial impact to the health of our waterways.

What can be done about the problems?

Fortunately, something can be done to keep stormwater flooding and pollution problems from becoming worse.
We can:

1. manage stormwater to control flooding and erosion;
2. plan and construct stormwater systems so contaminants are removed before they pollute our surface waters or our groundwater resources, acquire and protect natural waterways where they still exist or can be rehabilitated;
3. look for opportunities to build "soft" structures such as ponds, swales or wetlands to work with existing or "hard" structures, such as pipes and concrete channels;
4. revise current stormwater regulations to address our comprehensive stormwater needs;
5. enhance and enforce existing ordinances to make sure property owners consider the effects of stormwater before, during and after development of their land;
6. educate ourselves about how our actions affect the quality of our water, and about what we can do to improve water quality; and
7. plan carefully to create solutions before problems become too great.

What's being done now?

We are taking a detailed look at each watershed to determine the best way to handle stormwater from existing and future development. Watershed plans will enable us to make better choices about how to plan, maintain, and construct our drainage systems so they can better meet the community’s many needs.

We are improving the way we maintain ponds, swales, catch basins, drywells, ditches and culverts. We are mapping the location of each stormwater facility, monitoring their condition and tracking the time it takes to maintain them. This will help us determine which ones are working well, which ones aren’t and which ones we need to replace immediately to save money.

When you have a stormwater concern in your neighborhood, call the stormwater utility to find out what can be done. We use your calls to help us determine which facilities need to be replaced or repaired, call 425.295.0500 or email Stormwater Management Team

We are informing the public about drainage systems, how they function and how to take care of them. This will help reduce threats to water quality and prevent flooding problems.

Acknowledging growing concerns with stormwater in our daily lives, we have completed the Stormwater Management Program (SWMPR) document and the current Western WA Phase II Permit Annual Report. Both documents will be updated annually to address additional phased permit requirements as they come into effect. Please submit your comments to Stormwater Management Team or address written comments to: City of Sammamish Public Works, Sr Stormwater Program Engineer, 801 228th Ave SE, Sammamish WA 98075.

Our overall goal for the program is not only to meet the requirements of the municipal stormwater permit administereed by the Department of Ecology, but also to ensure that our program addresses your concerns. Sammamish Public Works staff have been working with other jurisdictions around the Puget Sound through several regional forums in a collaborative effort to share resources, tools, and methodologies to meet Ecology’s SWMPR requirements. While the SWMPR will be updated and expanded every year through 2012, this document will primarily include descriptions of our existing programs and our plan to update these programs to meet the requirements of the Permit.

The City Of Sammamish Would Like Your Participation

We need your help in developing and implementing this program for the City. Opportunities for you to participate include attending public hearings, working as a citizen volunteer to educate other individuals about the program, assisting in program coordination with other pre-existing programs, or participating in volunteer monitoring efforts. Please contact the Stormwater Management Team.


Help Keep Stormwater Clean

There are things we can do at home to reduce stormwater pollution in the region

  Waste Disposal and Spills

  1. Never dispose of oils, pesticides, or other chemicals onto driveways, roadways or storm drains. The next rain will carry it into surface water or help it soak into groundwater.
  2. Report polluters and spills.
  3. Storm drain marking with "ONLY RAIN DOWN THE DRAIN" message.
  4. For more information about household hazardous waste disposal options, check out the King County Hazardous Waste Management website.  


  1. Consider replacing impervious surfaces like sidewalks, decks, and driveways around your home with more pervious materials or methods like mulch, turf block, pervious concrete or clean stone. 
  2. Review your home for stormwater handling. If your gutters, downspouts, driveways, or decks directly discharge into a water body, retrofit them by redirecting the runoff onto grassy areas or installing berm/swale systems. Make sure that you are not causing a problem for a neighbor or to your own house.
  3. Collect stormwater runoff in closed rain barrels and use if for yard and garden watering.  

Car Care

  1. Make sure your automobile isn't leaking fluids.
  2. When possible use a commercial car washing facility.

Yard and Garden Care

  1. Practice natural yard care to reduce the use of hazardous products while saving time, water, money, and helping to preserve the environment.
  2. Instead of cleaning walkways with a hose, sweep up grass clippings, leaves, twigs and put them into a yard waste container or compost pile. Sweep up dirt and put it back into the garden. This way, you won't accidentally wash debris into a storm drain or waterway, and you'll save water.
  3. Choose plants and trees that resist pests and disease. Certain flowering cherry trees are resistant to brown rot. Some roses are resistant to aphids and mildew. Certain rhododendrons are resistant to root weevils and are drought tolerant. Nurseries can help you in making choices. 
  4. Avoid using weed and feed products. Applying this product to your entire lawn is overkill for weed control. Pull weeds by hand or with tools. If you decide to use a weed killer, wear gloves, spot spray just the weed, and spray when it isn't windy or when rain isn't predicted. Never use pesticides, fertilizers, or herbicides near streams, lakes, or wetlands.
  5. Avoid using Diazinon, often used to treat crane flies in lawns. This pesticide has also been found in our streams, and the Environmental Protection Agency is phasing it out because of the potential health risk to children.
  6. If you have an irrigation system, make sure it is in good working order and limit its use to actual watering needs.
  7. Collect stormwater runoff in closed rain barrels and use if for yard and garden watering (see above).
  8. Retain native vegetation along waterfronts to prevent erosion and help stop heavy rain sheet flow.

Pet Waste

  1. Practice proper pet waste disposal.  A day's waste from one large dog can contain 7.8 billion fecal coliform bacteria.
  2. When walking: bag it.  Bring plastic bags with you when you walk your dog.  Use a bag to pick up the dog waste.  Tie bag closed and place in trash.
  3. At home: trash it.  Double bag dog waste or kitty litter.  Tie securely and place in garbage.
  4. At home option:  flush it.  If you are on a sewer system (not septic) flush dog or cat waste down the toilet.  Kitty litter should not be flushed because it can clog your toilet or pipes.
  5. Tips for bagging it:  keep a supply of bags near your dog leash.  Reuse old newspaper, bread, or sandwich bags.  Tie bags on the leash if you don't have pockets.

Pool or Spa Care

  1. Do not drain your pool or spa to a lot, ditch or outside drain where water could enter groundwater, a stream or lake, or a storm drain.
  2. Do not drain your pool or spa to a septic system, as this action could cause the system to fail.


Low Impact Development (LID)
What is LID?

The low impact development approach to developing land and managing stormwater is to imitate the natural hydrology (or movement of water) of the site. In a mature Pacific Northwest forest, for example, almost all the rainfall (or snowmelt) disperses along the forest floor, where it infiltrates into the ground, is taken up by the roots of plants and trees, or evaporates. Researchers estimate that about less than one percent becomes surface runoff.

But when forests and natural open spa

ces are cleared, and buildings, roads, parking areas and lawns dominate the landscape, rainfall becomes stormwater runoff, carrying pollutants to nearby waters. Much less water infiltrates and is taken up by plants, less evaporates back to the atmosphere, and much more (about 20-30 percent in a suburban neighborhood) becomes surface runoff or stormwater runoff.

What are the benefits of LID?

When combined with other key elements of a comprehensive stormwater program, effective land-use planning under the Growth Management Act and watershed or basin planning, LID can help communities more efficiently and effectively manage stormwater, and protect their water resources.

  • LID can help better protect the environment. LID techniques remove pollutants from stormwater, reduce the overall volume of stormwater, manage high storm flows, and —or replenish—streams and wetlands.
  • LID can help reduce flooding and protect property. Reducing impervious surfaces, increasing vegetation and dispersing and infiltrating stormwater results in less runoff. This reduces the likelihood of flooding from big storms.
  • LID helps protect human health by more effectively removing pollutants from stormwater. Untreated stormwater can be unsafe for people to drink or swim in.
  • LID protects drinking water supplies by ensuring that rainfall infiltrates where it can recharge aquifers, rather than being treated as a waste and discharged to marine waters.
  • LID is good for the economy. LID can help protect shellfish growing businesses, water quality and marine sediment quality. This ensures that our resources remain clean and Puget Sound remains a great place to operate a business and attract employees. Taxpayers don’t have to pay for expensive cleanup efforts for polluted waters and sediments. And because LID projects in many cases are less expensive to build, it means that developers and builders can often save money on overall development costs by using LID.
  • LID provides cost-effe ctive alternatives to systems upgrades. Land developed prior to the 1990s usually provides little, if any, stormwater treatment. In many cases, LID systems, such as bioretention, are much less expensive to use than costly stormwater vaults or land-consuming stormwater ponds.
  • LID can increase the appearance and aesthetics of communities. LID projects leave more trees and plants and have less impervious surfaces, which makes for greener developments and communities.
  • LID can increase public safety. One of the hallmarks of LID is more narrow streets. Studies show that when vehicle traffic is slowed, there are fewer pedestrian accidents and fatalities.



Canines For Clean Water

A Stormwater Poo-llution Prevention Program for Dogs and Dog Owners who Care about Clean Water

How You Can Help Prevent Poo-llution...

Let's talk about poop. No, really...Let's talk about poop! Does your family own a dog? You probably even know lots of people with dogs. Now what do you think happens to all of the dog waste our pets leave behind?

When pet waste is left on the ground, especially near streets and sidewalks, rain, snowmelt, and your sprinklers wash it into storm drains and drainage ditches! This water, called runoff, generally does not get piped to the local wastewater plant to get cleaned or treated. So where does the runoff go, you ask?

Most often, it collects in underground wells to seep down to the aquifer. Otherwise, it flows directly to our streams, rivers, and lakes. Who wants to drink, or swim and fish in that?! Yuck!

Don't worry, though, nobody has to give up their pooch. Pet owners can improve water quality simply by picking up after their pets and throwing the waste away in the trash!

Did You Know?

Pet waste is full of bacteria, parasites, and viruses that can make wildlife and people sick! One average-size dog dropping contains 3 billion coliform bacteria. Multiply that by the fact that 40% of households have a dog, and you can see how the poo-llution really "piles" up!

Some Tips to Remember...

  • Scoop up after your pet and dispose of the waste properly - in a trash can or toilet. Don't bury it or compost it.
  • Keep your pet on a leash and on trails in natural areas.
  • Remain within off leash areas when off leash.
  • Encourage your friends and family to do the same!

See the new Puget Sound Starts Here "Scoop the Poop" campaign video: Dog Doogity

Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteers are critical to many state and local government programs across the country.  Volunteers help with stream cleanups, restoration projects, tree planting activities, and stream monitoring.   Volunteers are trained to help with different activities, depending on the local information needs. Whatever your interest or activity level is, there is a volunteer activity for you! Check back often for updates or contact the Stormwater Management Team   

Storm Drain Marking

Do you need to do an environmental stewardship project this summer to meet a school or organizational requirement?

Or do you just want to spend a sunny afternoon outside giving a little back to your community?

Help improve water quality in Sammamish by participating in the storm drain marker program. This program reminds residents and businesses that in many areas of King County stormwater drains directly into streams, rivers, lakes, and eventually Puget Sound.

This project is appropriate for individuals or large groups school age and older. The task is simple, but the message is priceless! If this sounds like the project for you or your organization, contact Lisa Werre at 425-295-0573.

Drain Marker Program Information

Drain Marker Installation Instructions
West Nile Virus


What can I do to reduce my risk of becoming infected with West Nile virus?

Here are preventive measures that you and your family can take:

Protect yourself from mosquito bites:

  • Apply insect repellent to exposed skin. Generally, the the more active ingredient a repellent contains the longer it can protect you from mosquito bites. A higher percentage of active ingredient in a repellent does not mean that your protection is better—just that it will last longer. Choose a repellent that provides protection for the amount of time that you will be outdoors.
    • Repellents may irritate the eyes and mouth, so avoid applying repellent to the hands of children.
    • Whenever you use an insecticide or insect repellent, be sure to read and follow the manufacturer's DIRECTIONS FOR USE, as printed on the product.  
  • Spray clothing with repellents containing permethrin or another EPA-registered repellent since mosquitoes may bite through thin clothing. Do not apply repellents containing permethrin directly to exposed skin. Do not apply repellent to skin under your clothing.
  • When weather permits, wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants whenever you are outdoors.
  • Place mosquito netting over infant carriers when you are outdoors with infants.
  • Consider staying indoors at dawn, dusk, and in the early evening, which are peak mosquito biting times.
  • Install or repair window and door screens so that mosquitoes cannot get indoors.

Help reduce the number of mosquitoes in areas outdoors where you work or play, by draining sources of standing water. In this way, you reduce the number of places mosquitoes can lay their eggs and breed.

  • At least once or twice a week, empty water from flower pots, pet food and water dishes, birdbaths, swimming pool covers, buckets, barrels, and cans.
  • Check for clogged rain gutters and clean them out.
  • Remove discarded tires, and other items that could collect water.
  • Be sure to check for containers or trash in places that may be hard to see, such as under bushes or under your home.

Note: Vitamin B and "ultrasonic" devices are NOT effective in preventing mosquito bites.

What can be done to prevent outbreaks of West Nile virus?

Prevention and control of West Nile virus and other arboviral diseases is most effectively accomplished through integrated vector management programs. These programs should include surveillance for West Nile virus activity in mosquito vectors, birds, horses, other animals, and humans, and implementation of appropriate mosquito control measures to reduce mosquito populations when necessary. Additionally, when virus activity is detected in an area, residents should be alerted and advised to increase measures to reduce contact with mosquitoes. Details about effective prevention and control of West Nile virus can be found on CDC's (Center for Disease Control) webpage.

Is there a vaccine against West Nile encephalitis?

No, but several groups are working towards developing a vaccine.

Where can I get information about the use of pesticide sprays that are being used for mosquito control?

The federal agency responsible for pesticide evaluation is the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). See EPA's website website for detailed answers to the questions about pesticides used for mosquito control.

Eco-Friendly Car Wash Kits

Car washes can be a popular choice for fund-raising, but did you know that the soap and water used to wash and rinse cars contain waste that can pollute our water resources?

The storm drain system empties the water directly into our local creeks, lakes and Puget Sound without treatment. This is how car wash fund-raising events can create a significant amount of water pollution without even realizing it.

Don’t let your charitable event cause water pollution in our lakes and the Sound! The City of Sammamish has a “Sudsafe” Car Wash Kit available for loan to non-profit organizations. These kits are loaned out to groups on a first-come/first-served basis. To borrow a Car Wash Kit from the City of Sammamish Stormwater Management Team for your event, please contact the Stormwater Management Team at 425-295-0573.

Drainage Inspection Program

The City has one Stormwater Inspector that inspects all of our residential and commercial facilities on a yearly basis along with spot checks by City staff.


Illicit Discharge Detection & Elimination

The Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination (IDDE) Program is designed to detect and remove prohibited stormwater discharges pursuant to the requirements described in the Western Washington Phase II Municipal Stormwater Permit, Section S5.C.3. Both qualitative and quantitative evaluations are performed to determine whether a documented prohibited stormwater discharge must be immediately contained or not. Specific steps are then taken for containment of discharges that impact, or that have the potential to impact, the City's municipal separate stormwater system (MS4), surface water, or groundwater.

Prohibited stormwater discharge violations include all violations subject to Title 15 of King County Surface Water Design Manual.

Prohibited stormwater discharges occur for various reasons, including but not limited to: illicit discharges, illicit connections, illegal dumping, equipment malfunctions, operating accidents, fires, natural events, and vandalism. These incidents may result in contamination of private or public property that causes harm to public health, as well as natural, cultural and economic.


Stormwater Management Team

Tawni Dalziel
Senior Stormwater Program Manager
(425) 295-0567
Email Tawni

Lisa Werre
Stormwater Technician
(425) 295-0573
Email Lisa


Report a Drainage Problem

The Basics of Good Reporting

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 observation.

Time/date of your observation. Does it occur at a certain time? (e.g., everyday at 6:00 a.m.?)

Could you determine the source?

How did the water look?

Did you observe any dead fish?

Are there any odors?

Were there 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.

To report a drainage or water quality problem by phone, please call (425) 295-0500.