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What You Need to Know about Stormwater BMP Inspections



Stormwater facilities BMPs are crucial to the community. Maintaining them properly prevents downstream flooding, controls urban runoff, and reduces the pests that like to grow around stormwater. This is why stormwater BMP inspections are so important. Let’s go over the basics together.

BMP stands for best management practices, and generally refers to devices built to treat stormwater. Examples would be retention ponds, bioretention ponds or stormwater wetlands. The EPA has 6 minimum requirements for BMPs, and it allows facilities to implement them in any way that works best for the facility. One of those requirements is maintaining them, and maintaining BMPs requires regular inspections.

Under the EPA’s stormwater  Phase II rule, facility owners are generally held responsible for maintaining BMPs. There are 2 kinds of BMP inspections that a facility should administer: regular maintenance inspections and inspections done after storms. A regular inspection should be held at least once in late summer, possibly September. Inspecting monthly during the rainy months is a good idea, too. These inspections can be simple visual checks done with checklists to make sure all the parts are working efficiently and have good structural integrity, but knowing what to look for can call for a trained individual. A good inspector will check for drainage problems, excess sediment, and invasive or noxious species. Somebody should also check for bad smells and signs of pollutants from urban runoff. Maintenance requirements should be on an inspection checklist so that people can see if the maintenance schedule is adequate.

After a storm, a BMP will need to be gone over to make sure nothing broke or got clogged. For vegetative BMP, the inspections should be done after the expected drawdown period to judge if the facility is draining properly.

BMPs are site-specific. Their needs vary according to region and circumstances. An inspection should be done by someone familiar with the site and the requirements of the area. Dragonfly Pond Works would be only too glad to help you figure out BMP inspections, so feel free to contact us with any questions you have. A Dragonfly Pond Works, we believe in turning ugly and unsafe ponds and lakes into Sanctuaries for all to enjoy.