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Wastewater includes body waste; water from bathing, showering and washing; water from washing clothes and dishes; water from washing, rinsing and otherwise preparing food; and water from normal household cleaning with household detergents and cleaners.
Stormwater is rainwater that has fallen on the ground, a building, parking or roadway, etc. and flows through ditches, storm drains, pipes, curb and gutter, etc. into streams, creeks, rivers and/or lakes.
A sanitary sewer is a publicly-maintained pipe, normally with a diameter of at least eight inches, which carries wastewater to a treatment plant.
A wastewater treatment plant uses physical, biological and chemical processes to clean and disinfect wastewater so that it can be returned to the natural environment, usually at a stream, creek or lake. In our community, the City of Marshall Wastewater Treatment Plant on the southeast side of Industrial Road returns highly treated wastewater to the Kalamazoo River.
The solid particles separated from wastewater are treated and converted into "biosolids" that are recycled on farmland.
The following items are normally suitable for disposal down the drain or toilet:
The following items should not go down the drain because they can damage or block your drainpipes and public sewers, can damage the wastewater treatment plant or its biological processes, could harm your septic system (if you have one) or may be hazardous for other reasons.
The list above is a summary intended to indicate types of items that should not go down the drain.
If you have questions or comments about whether something should be disposed of in the sewer system, please email the City of Marshall Environmental Department or call at 269-781-3985.