South Point gets pollution prevention markers

Published 12:00 am Sunday, July 29, 2007

The Village of South Point is first to be marked in Lawrence County — storm drains, that is.

On July 2, the village and the Lawrence Soil and Water conservation district worked on a project of marking storm drains in that area with bright blue and green markers.

The markers have a pollution prevention message, “Don’t Pollute: Flows to Waterways.”

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This is the first time storm drains have been marked in Lawrence County.

“This is a great project that we are glad to be working on with the village,” said Carrie Yaniko, education/urban coordinator for Lawrence SWCD. “A lot of people don’t realize that the water that flows into these storm drains goes directly to an outfall — directly to the river.”

According to Lawrence SWCD, when it rains, water washes over the streets, driveways and yards picking up pollutants along the way and flowing into storm drains. This runoff may contain pollutants like used motor oil, yard clippings, pet waste, litter, lawn chemicals, anti-freeze or other toxins, which can pollute the water supply as well as clog pipes and culverts which can also lead to flooding.

Sometimes people dump things directly down the drain.

“Hopefully, by seeing the bright marker that says don’t pollute, that it is going keep people from putting pollutants down the drain,” Yaniko said.

“Those pollutants aren’t going to a treatment center, they go straight out into the water body.,” she said.

The project is part of the village’s Storm Water Management Plan goals.

“There is one drain we found that somebody had been dumping something, like oil,” Yaniko said. “Water is a limited resource, so if we keep polluting it we’re not going to have any clean water. It is very important that we protect this very limited resource.”

At this point and time there is not any village ordinance preventing people from doing it, but they are hoping that people will become more aware of the pollution problem and help.

Some things that people can do to prevent water pollution include :

– Properly dispose of hazardous waste;

– Recycle used motor oil;

– Use fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides sparingly and follow instructions

– Keep waste, trash and dirt off the streets and out of the gutters; and,

-Wash the car at a car wash or park it in the grass

before you wash it.