Septage Violations Photo Gallery

Septage dumping beside a field

Dumping unscreened septage waste without the use of a spread plate. This is an example of nonuniform surface application of septage waste. The slope of the the field above exceeded 6% and resulted in the septage running off the site into an adjoining creek. All of the items noted are violations of Part 117.

Septage being dumped into a wetland in winter

 Septage being dumped into a wetland in winter 

A view from out in the wetland

 A view from out in the wetland    

Stationary septage dumping moves offsite, polluting lakes, streams or groundwater

 Stationary septage dumping allows septage to move offsite, polluting lakes and streams or groundwater.  

Trail of septage going from dump site out onto a road

Untreated septage “applied” to a public road from the pump truck as it exited the land application site. The discharge of untreated human waste on the roadway provides a pathway for direct human contact and disease transmission. 


Quail tracks in septage

 Quail tracks in septage. Any creature that touches septage can transmit diseases to humans that later touch that creature.  

Septage flowing from stationary dump location and pooling

  Ponding, untreated sewage is the result of “dumping” septage - nonuniform application of septage waste.  This is not agronomic and can result in runoff in addition to groundwater and soil contamination. This a serious violation of Part 117, Septage Waste Servicers, of the Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act, 1994 PA 451. 

  Septage injector unit made of bedsprings, which is very poor practice.

Injector unit and bedsprings. The injector unit has only 2 injector shanks. This makes it virtually impossible to meet the uniform, agronomic application requirements found in Part 117.  Further, the shanks on this unit are short and the trench cut is wide and shallow resulting in ponding septage.  Instead of coulters, bedsprings were used to close the trench furrow.  This is a very poor practice and is not considered “injection” under the law.


A septage trench cutting unit that creates trenches too narrow and shallow for septage application 
Note the width of the shallow trench cut with this unit.


Shallow trenches with ponding septage waste, which is the result of improperly applied septage waste

This is the end result – shallow trenches with ponding septage waste.  When septage waste is properly land applied, either by surface application or injection, little to no ponding should occur.  If ponding does occur it is up to the licensed business to immediately stop and make adjustments to their equipment or land application methods to ensure compliance with both state and federal laws.