There are a few parts of the stormwater pollution prevention plan (SWPPP) process that are relatively consistent and vital, and SWPPP inspections are definitely on this list. These inspections must be carried out by licensed SWPPP inspectors, ensuring that construction sites are always properly complying with local and federal SWPPP regulations while maintaining health and safety in the area - and as such, these inspectors are important individuals to consider.

At Silver Leaf SWPPP, we're here to provide numerous SWPPP solutions to clients around Utah, including SWPPP inspections of the highest quality. For those just learning about this field, here are some of the basics you should know about SWPPP inspectors - the kinds of inspections they carry out, the qualifications they need, the kinds of issues they help identify and remedy, and more.

Kinds of Stormwater Inspections

Generally speaking, there are a few different types of SWPPP inspection that a given SWPPP inspector might carry out. These include:

  • Construction site inspections: Inspections that take place at construction sites for the purpose of identifying any pollutants, potential pollutants, and other issues related to stormwater runoff.
  • Industrial facility inspections: Inspections at industrial facilities to ensure that any pollutants generated on-site are properly managed and treated.
  • Stormwater runoff sampling: Sampling stormwater runoff from construction sites or industrial facilities in order to determine the kinds, amounts, and sources of any pollutants present.
  • Municipal infrastructure inspections: Inspections at municipal infrastructure sites to identify any sources of pollutants that could be entering the stormwater system.

Qualifications and Capabilities of SWPPP Inspectors

SWPPP inspectors should have a solid understanding of the different requirements for preventing water pollution, as well as an eye for spotting potential sources or instances of water pollution. They must also have relevant training related to the tasks they're carrying out, and in many cases, will need licensing or certifications in order for their inspections to be deemed valid.

Additionally, SWPPP inspectors should possess certain qualities that make them successful at their job. These include attention to detail, strong communication skills (for communicating with contractors on-site), problem-solving abilities, and experience in the SWPPP industry.

Specific Duties SWPPP Inspectors Carry Out

Here are some of the specific tasks your inspector will typically be in charge of:

  • Basic inspections for regulation compliance: One of the top priorities of an inspector is to make sure that the construction site or facility they're inspecting complies with all relevant regulations (local, state, and federal). This may include examining sediment delivery systems, performing erosion control inspections, or check for any non-compliant activities occurring at the site.
  • Sampling of stormwater runoff: An inspector may also need to take samples of the stormwater runoff from a given construction site or industrial facility in order to test for pollutants and other contaminants. This is important for understanding how much pollution is present and whether action needs to be taken.
  • Identifying violations and corrective actions: It's also important for an inspector to identify any violations that may be occurring and provide recommendations on corrective actions. For instance, they may need to advise contractors on how to implement Best Management Practices (BMPs) or suggest better ways of controlling stormwater runoff in order to comply with regulations.
  • Records and reports: It's important for an inspector to generate detailed records and reports of their findings. These should include recommendations on any corrective actions that might need to be taken, as well as a documented history of inspections conducted.
  • Technical support to help achieve compliance: For instances where the contractor or facility manager may need assistance in understanding and achieving compliance, the inspector should also be able to provide technical support. This can include advice on how to build a SWPPP plan, how to implement BMPs, and more.
  • Regulator communication: Finally, it's important for an inspector to be able to communicate effectively with regulators. This includes providing the necessary data and information needed by the regulator, as well as responding to questions or inquiries in a timely manner.

Violations or Actions Inspectors Often Notice

While this is far from an exhaustive list, here are some of the more common violations or recommended actions that SWPPP inspectors may note on sites:

  • BMP implementation failure: If a contractor has not properly implemented the necessary BMPs for controlling pollutants, an inspector may note this and recommend corrective action.
  • Stormwater runoff management failure: Similarly, if there is inadequate stormwater runoff management in place, it should be noted as this could lead to water pollution. The inspector can then suggest strategies for proper management of the stormwater runoff.
  • Storage failure: If pollutants have been stored or handled in an incorrect manner, this should be noted and corrective action recommended.
  • Erosion control failure: This is a common issue at construction sites, where proper erosion control measures may not have been taken to prevent soil from being washed into nearby waterways.

At Silver Leaf SWPPP, our team of experienced SWPPP inspectors possess all the necessary qualifications and experience needed to help ensure your construction sites are compliant with local regulations and free from pollutants. Contact us today for more information on our SWPPP inspection services around Utah.

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