Help Prevent Street Flooding - Keep Storm Drains Clear

storm drain with leaves

The City maintains more than 40,000 catch basins (storm drains) and more than 6,200 miles of sewers.

Help prevent street flooding by keeping storm drains free from blockages. The accumulation of leaves in the fall is a common cause of storm sewer blockages. Following proper yard waste collection guidelines can help keep storm drains flowing at peak performance during wet weather.

Construction Worker in Vest Digging During extreme winter conditions, residents are asked to step up and do their part by shoveling walks and clearing snow and ice from catch basins. If you live along a residential street and can safely access the catch basin without risk of slipping or falling into traffic, shovel the snow and ice into the sewer and onto the curb, but away from sidewalks. Heat within the sewer will melt the ice. Churches, area commissions, civic associations and other neighborhood groups can band together to clear catch basins in their neighborhood, allowing the melting snow and ice to flow into storm sewers. Again, safety first - please do not attempt to clear basins along busy streets or where there is risk of being hit by traffic.

Residents also can help by clearing ice and snow from sump pump outlet pipes to prevent water from backing up into basements and downspout pipe outlets at the curb.

NoDumping-DrainstoRiver-724145.jpg Another leading cause of storm drain blockages is litter. Trash left along roadways, ditches and stream banks washes into our waterways with rain and melting snow. Not only is littering illegal, it is an eyesore which can endanger wildlife and allow stagnant water to breed mosquitoes. Take pride in your community and help promote better drainage by cleaning up litter. For information about organizing a litter cleanup in your Columbus neighborhood, call Keep Columbus Beautiful at 614-645-8027. Or check our Volunteer Opportunities for other events including our Storm Drain Marker Program.

To report a suspected storm sewer blockage or other sewer maintenance issue, call the 24-hour Sewer Maintenance Operations Center at 614-645-7102.