There are a few situations where stormwater pollution prevention plan (SWPPP) setups on construction sites will involve a bit more nuance than usual, and one of these is when various subcontractors are involved in a given job. Every person who spends time on a construction site is responsible for following SWPPP guidelines and implementations, and ensuring that this happens across the board is very important.

At Silver Leaf SWPPP, we're here to help clients across Utah with all their SWPPP needs, from electronic SWPPP documentation to SWPPP inspections and much more. Here are some basics on how to incorporate subcontractors into SWPPP agreements, the vital training areas that may be required here, and how inspectors play an important role as well.

Primary Developer Vs Subcontractors

In most construction settings, a single party or company will be considered the "primary developer" or entity in charge of the broad project. This entity will be the one who files for the SWPPP permit, and will be the one primarily responsible for enforcing SWPPP regulations and plans.

It's vital to note, however, that this person or entity may not be present on the job site at all times, and this is where subcontractors may be utilized. In such a situation, it's important the primary developer communicate to their subcontractors all the necessary SWPPP-related details, including a thorough understanding of the stormwater management plan that has been laid out.

Legally Binding Agreements

In fact, those who are taking SWPPP seriously will want to go further than just a verbal understanding - they'll want to make sure that their subcontractors are aware of the legal repercussions of not following SWPPP guidelines by signing a contract or agreement that binds them to those regulations. This may cover topics such as expected hours onsite, necessary training sessions, and more - all with regards to stormwater management.

Any subcontractor who will be providing specific services to the primary development should sign such an agreement, and this may include site preparation teams, excavation workers, demolition crews, and more.

Training & Safety

After signing the SWPPP agreement, subcontractors must be given adequate training in all necessary areas concerning SWPPP plans. This may include several important areas:

  • Erosion control: This can range from understanding the basics of sediment barriers to topics such as "constructed channels," which involve the use of berms and other structures to help protect against erosion.
  • Pollution control: Subcontractors should understand what pollutants they may be dealing with, and how to handle them in a safe manner - as well as how necessary it is to avoid discharging such materials into stormwater runoff.
  • Site mapping: This involves understanding the geography and layout of the site, as well as the locations where waste and other pollutants are likely to accumulate.
  • Spill prevention: Making sure that subcontractors are aware of what to do in the case of an accidental spill, and how to minimize environmental damage.
  • Cleanup needs: Subcontractors should understand what is expected of them after they are done working on the site - this may include properly disposing of waste materials, or even restoring vegetation in certain areas.
  • Avoiding stormwater BMP damage: Learning how to avoid damaging existing BMP infrastructure, such as sediment ponds and silt fences, is critical.
  • Understanding penalties for noncompliance: Knowing the potential penalties for not following all SWPPP regulations is essential to ensure compliance.

SWPPP Inspections

SWPPP inspectors play many important roles on a given job site. They are responsible for checking in on all subcontractors to make sure they are abiding by all SWPPP protocols, and can provide much-needed feedback if any issues arise.

It's essential that these inspectors be trusted members of the team who fully understand SWPPP guidelines and regulations - as well as the fact that their reporting is absolutely necessary should any violations occur.

Following all these steps can help ensure that all subcontractors on a given job site understand their responsibilities concerning SWPPP protocols, and they will be held accountable in case of noncompliance or negligence. By doing so, developers can make sure that stormwater pollution is prevented and controlled - even when multiple entities are involved.

At Silver Leaf SWPPP, we understand the unique challenges of projects that involve subcontractors. We offer comprehensive SWPPP setup, inspection, and reporting services to help ensure your Utah project is a success - contact us today to learn more!

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