Article III. Sewer

Chapter 13.21


13.21.010    Purpose.

13.21.020    Inspections – Right of entry.

13.21.030    Emergency interruption of service.

13.21.040    City not liable for damages.

13.21.050    Refusal, limitation, or discontinuance of service.

13.21.060    Unlawful acts defined.

13.21.070    Violations – Penalties – Chapter 1.20 PTMC applicable.

13.21.010 Purpose.

A. The purpose of Chapters 13.21 through 13.24 PTMC (hereinafter this “sewer code”) is to promote the public health, safety, and general welfare of the users of the Port Townsend sewer system, in accordance with standards established by the city, state and federal laws and regulations. In furtherance of this purpose, the following rates and regulations are established for the service, extension and management of the city’s sewer system.

B. Chapter 13.01 PTMC contains definitions and provisions related to engineering design standards manual, administration and enforcement, compliance with federal, state and local requirements, permit requirements, inspection requirements, performance bond requirements, appeals, waivers and variances which are considered part of this sewer code. (Ord. 2579 § 1, 1997).

13.21.020 Inspections – Right of entry.

Any person applying for a service connection to the city’s sewer system shall be deemed to have freely and voluntarily consented to entry by authorized city employees, at reasonable hours of the day and upon advance notice to the occupant, onto all parts of the premises or within buildings for the purpose of inspecting the sewer system construction and/or checking conformity to these regulations and the city engineering design standards manual. All other right of entry by city employees shall be governed by the procedures of Chapter 1.20 PTMC. (Ord. 2952 § 1, 2008; Ord. 2579 § 1, 1997).

13.21.030 Emergency interruption of service.

In case of emergency, or whenever the public health or safety so demands, the director may authorize the department to change, reduce or limit the time for, or temporarily discontinue sewer service. Sewer service may be temporarily interrupted for purposes of making repairs, extension or doing other necessary work, or due to sewer main breaks. Before so changing, reducing, limiting or interrupting the use of the sewer system, the department shall, insofar as is possible or practical, notify all sewer customers affected. (Ord. 2579 § 1, 1997).

13.21.040 City not liable for damages.

A. City Nonliability. The city shall not be liable for damages nor will allowances be made for loss of production, sales or service if the city’s wastewater system changes, fails or is curtailed, suspended, interrupted or interfered with, or for any cause reasonably beyond its control. Such failure, curtailment, suspension, interruption or interference shall not be held to constitute a breach of contract on the part of the city, or in any way affect any liability for payment for wastewater made available or for money due on or before the date of such occurrence. The customer shall notify the public works department as soon as possible in the event of any such occurrence.

B. Pipes and Equipment on Customer’s Premises. In accordance with Chapter 13.23 PTMC, all city pipes and equipment shall be located in the public right-of-way. In the event that city pipes and equipment are located on the customer’s premises, the customer agrees, as a condition of service, not to make a claim against nor sue the city for any damages due to leakage and shall hold the city harmless from any and all claims and litigation which allege damages resulting from leakage occurring at such pipes and/or equipment. (Ord. 2579 § 1, 1997).

13.21.050 Refusal, limitation, or discontinuance of service.

A. The city may refuse or discontinue sewer service to any customer through shut-off of water service for violation of any provision of the sewer code or for failure to pay bills when due.

B. The city may refuse service or require pretreatment to any customer who requests to discharge or discharges deleterious or high strength wastewater that impairs or could impair the integrity, operation or performance of the system or consumes a large portion of the capacity of the system.

C. The city may discontinue service to any customer who makes an unauthorized connection to the city’s sewer system, bypasses a wastewater meter, or in any way misappropriates use of the city sewer system.

D. Discontinuance of service for any cause stated in this title shall not release the customer from their obligation to the city for the payment of bills or charges. (Ord. 2579 § 1, 1997).

13.21.060 Unlawful acts defined.

A. It shall be unlawful for any person to make an unauthorized connection to the city’s sewer system.

B. Any person causing damage to any property belonging to the department shall be liable for any and all damages resulting either directly or indirectly therefrom.

C. It is unlawful for any person to willfully disturb, break, deface, damage or trespass upon any property belonging to or connected with the sewer system of the city, in any manner whatsoever.

D. It is unlawful to deposit any salt water, toxic, potentially hazardous or other material that may cause interference or inhibit the normal metabolic function of an aerobic biological waste treatment system, or the biosolids composting facility or which may be limiting or in any way harmful to plant personnel, or which may result in the city’s treated effluent or biosolids exceeding its NPDES limitations including but not limited to the prohibitions identified in the city’s permit with the Department of Ecology as follows:

1. Pollutants that create a fire or explosion hazard in the treatment facility (including, but not limited to, waste streams with a closed cup flashpoint of less than 140 degrees Fahrenheit or 60 degrees centigrade using the test methods specified in 40 CFR 261.21);

2. Pollutants that will cause a hazard to personnel or equipment or corrosive structural damage to the sewer collection system and treatment facility, but in no case discharges with pH lower than 5.5 standard units or higher than 8.5 standard units;

3. Solid or viscous pollutants in amounts that could cause obstruction to the flow in sewers or otherwise interfere with the operation of the treatment facility or biosolids composting facility;

4. Any pollutant, including oxygen demanding pollutants (BOD, etc.) released in a discharge at a flow rate and/or pollutant concentration which will cause interference with the treatment facility or biosolids composting facility;

5. Heat in amounts that will inhibit biological activity in the treatment facility resulting in interference, but in no case heat in such quantities such that the temperature at the treatment facility exceeds 40 degrees centigrade (104 degrees Fahrenheit);

6. Petroleum oil, nonbiodegradable cutting oil, or products of mineral origin in amounts that will cause interference or pass through;

7. Pollutants which result in the presence of toxic gases, vapors, or fumes within the treatment facility and/or wastewater collection system in a quantity which may cause acute worker health and safety problems;

8. Any trucked or hauled pollutants, except at discharge points designated by the city;

9. Any water or waste which contains more than 100 parts per million by weight of fat, oil or grease;

10. Any garbage that has not been properly shredded as herein defined; or

11. Any noxious or malodorous gas or substance capable of creating a public nuisance.

E. It is unlawful for any person to place, deposit, or permit to be discharged in any unsanitary manner upon public or private property within the city or in any area under the jurisdiction of the city, any human or animal excrement, garbage or other objectionable waste.

F. It is unlawful to divert or cause to be diverted any stormwater, surface runoff or underground drainage to any sewer, maintenance hole or other appurtenant structure or portion of the sewer system.

G. It is unlawful for any person to refuse or fail to comply with any provision of this sewer code or the city engineering design standards manual. (Ord. 2579 § 1, 1997).

13.21.070 Violations – Penalties – Chapter 1.20 PTMC applicable.

A. Director’s Authority. Whenever the public works director or his or her designee (“director”) determines that a condition exists in violation of this chapter or any standard required to be adhered to by this chapter, or in violation of any permit issued hereunder, he or she is authorized to enforce the provisions of this chapter.

B. Chapter 1.20 PTMC Applicable. All violations of any provision of this chapter or incorporated standards, or of any permit or license issued hereunder, are declared nuisances and made subject to the administration and enforcement provisions of Chapter 1.20 PTMC, including any amendments, and including but not limited to abatement, criminal penalty, and civil penalty as set forth in Chapter 1.20 PTMC, which are incorporated by reference as if set forth herein. (Ord. 2952 § 3, 2008; Ord. 2579 § 1, 1997).