The Road Side/Off Road Ditch Maintenance Section is responsible for the maintenance and re-grading of roadside ditches. This includes flushing culverts under driveways and streets. While the City Code of Ordinances mandates abutting property owners maintain ditches free of debris, the Branch will re-grade ditches that become heavily silted. Culverts are also flushed during this activity. New culverts or culverts that are damaged or undersized under residential or commercial driveways are the property owner's responsibility for replacement. Many off-road drainage ditches are cleaned and re-graded by the Branch. These off-road ditches collect storm water from many smaller ditches and storm sewers and transport it to larger ditches and/or bayous maintained by the Harris County Flood Control District. (Maintained Ditches Map)
The Storm Sewer Maintenance Section handles the operation and maintenance of the City's storm sewer system, including tasks such as cleaning manholes, inlets, and storm sewer lines and leads. The storm sewer system is very different from the sanitary sewer system that carries waste from your home. These sewers are designed only for storm water and empty directly into major ditches and bayous. This Section is also responsible for entering large-diameter storm sewers to remove debris and objects that can block the storm sewer. These tasks are performed by "Confined Space Entry" teams that ensure safe maintenance in these conditions. In order to limit environmental concerns and maintenance needs, citizens are reminded to never dispose of grass clippings, motor oil, or any other items in the storm sewer.
The Storm Water Quality Enforcement Section monitors and inspects runoff from manufacturers and industrial businesses to prevent pollutants from entering our streams and bayous. Also, in support of the City's Texas Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (TPDES) Storm Water Permit, the City will conduct various tasks including monitoring outfalls within the City's limits, investigations of illegal discharges to the storm sewer system, and disposal of household hazardous waste through the Solid Waste Department's Environmental Service Centers.
The Technical Services Section focuses on special projects, monitoring project spending, preparing bid items, creating contracts, monitoring contractors, assisting with creating scopes of work for projects, drainage assessments, and collecting any other data needed to identify drainage concerns. In addition, this Section is responsible for the inspection of 240 miles of storm sewers, including mainlines and leads, along with 60,000 new/different manholes and inlets per year. The Section also conducts inspections of new and rehabilitated storm water systems, responds to requests for drainage information from other City entities, and works closely with Storm Water Engineering on Local Drainage Projects.