Department of Health & Human Services

Posted on: January 5, 2015

Wet weather test period opens

The Humboldt County Department of Health & Human Services (DHHS), Environmental Health Division, is announcing the opening of the wet weather test period for the evaluation of proposed individual on-site wastewater treatment systems (OWTS). The effective opening date was Dec. 24, 2014. Under normal rainfall conditions, the test period will continue until April 1, 2015. The test period is subject to closure if adequate rainfall is not received for a significant period.

While not required in all geographic regions of the county, wet weather testing is required for proposed OWTS sites with soils of low permeability requiring percolation testing, and/or where the depth to seasonally high groundwater needs to be determined. Wet weather testing is mandatory in the waiver prohibition areas of Old Arcata Road, Jacoby Creek and Freshwater and is necessary in almost every case in Fieldbrook, Hydesville and the Trinidad areas.

All parties anticipating to subdivide land or to develop sites with individual OWTS should contact a registered civil engineer, geologist or other qualified consultant to arrange for testing as early in the wet season as possible. For some sites, the test process may require several weeks of monitoring. An early start is highly recommended to ensure completion of testing before the test period closes.

You can obtain additional information regarding wet weather testing procedures by calling the Environmental Health Division at 445-6215 or 800-963-9241.

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