The PBCWUD Pretreatment Program provides for the regulation of wastewater dischargers into the sanity sewer system. The Department administers the program in accordance with Palm Beach County Ordinance 96-3. The purpose of the program is to prevent the introduction of pollutants into the wastewater collection and treatment system. This is import to prevent interference with the treatment process, avoid damage to the equipment, harm to its workers, the public and the environment.
The program requires all new connections to the sewer system to be inspected for applicable pretreatment equipment, such as, oil and grease interceptors (OGI), lint traps, oil/water interceptors, etc. Any changes in existing non-residential customer accounts are reviewed for pretreatment requirements. It is recommended that these changes, renovation, alteration, etc., be forwarded to the Utilities for review for the need of any type of pretreatment. This will avoid delays in re-construction. The program provides for an annual OGI fee of $300 be added to the water bill. All industrial users are subject to permits based on the process wastewater discharged into the sanitary sewer system. These permitted users are monitored and sampled for compliance with the local discharge limits listed in the ordinance as well as federal limits listed in the code of federal regulations.
The Utilities Department's OGI Monitoring Program requires all restaurants, food service and auto repair facilities to maintain and clean their grease traps and oil/water separators at least annually. These OGI's are sampled and inspected every six months. If test results indicate the pretreatment limits are exceeded, the customer is notified of an applicable monthly surcharge in writing. In order to comply and avoid the surcharge, the customer must have the trap cleaned and provide proof (legible copy of invoice or cleaning manifest) and test results from an independent certified laboratory indicating compliance limits have been met to the Water Utilities Department Pretreatment Coordinator prior to the date indicated on the notification letter.
Frequently Asked Questions about the Pretreatment Program
(Click for a Downloadable Brochure)
The purpose of the pretreatment program is to block the introduction of pollutants, which can cause damage to the equipment and interfere with the wastewater treatment process, from entering the wastewater collection system. The program is important in preventing harm to workers, the public, wastewater equipment and the environment.
WHAT IS PRETREATMENT?
Pretreatment is a requirement placed on some commercial and industrial wastewater customers to provide treatment of the wastewater prior to discharging to the wastewater collection system. For example: grease traps, oil/water separators, chemical neutralization and cyclone grit separators are a few methods of pretreatment.
WHY IS PRETREATMENT REQUIRED?
To comply with Federal and State regulations and statutes. The program is administered through the Palm Beach County (PBC) Sewers and Sewage Disposal Ordinance, PBC Environmental Control 1 and Palm Beach County Water Utilities Department (PBCWUD) Uniform Policies and Procedures (UPAP). The laws were enacted to protect human health and safety by limiting or prohibiting hazardous discharges to the collection system.
WHEN DID THE PRETREATMENT PROGRAM BECOME EFFECTIVE?
The program became effective with the approval of the PBC Sewer Use Ordinance by the Board of County Commissioners in 1996. The State of Florida’s Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) mandated pretreatment programs in 1997.
WHAT ARE THE WASTEWATER LIMITS?
For major industrial dischargers, the limits are listed in the Ordinance. For customers with oil/grease interceptors, grease traps and oil/water separators, the following limits on the discharge from the pretreatment device must meet the following limits:
Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD)
400 mg/L or less in concentration
Total Suspended Solids (TSS)
400 mg/L or less in concentration
100 mg/L or less in concentration
WHAT IF I HAVE MORE QUESTIONS?
Additional information can be obtained by contacting the Pretreatment Program Coordinator at
561-493-6025 or firstname.lastname@example.org.