State-by-State Guide to Stormwater Drain Responsibility
As an Australian resident, it's important to be aware of your state and local government's regulations when it comes to stormwater drainage. This article will provide a comprehensive guide to stormwater drain responsibility across the country. Keep reading for information on who is responsible for drainage in each state and some tips on how you can help keep your neighbourhood water-friendly!
What is stormwater?
Before we dive into the specifics of each state, it's important to understand what stormwater is. Stormwater is water that originates from rainfall, snowmelt and irrigation runoff which flows across land surfaces collecting pollutants on its way to streams, rivers and other bodies of water. It eventually makes its way to a drainage system or outlet.
Responsibility for stormwater drains by the state
In the Australian Capital Territory:
Stormwater drains are owned and maintained by the government. All residents are responsible for keeping drains clear of debris, leaves and other materials that can block the system.
In New South Wales:
In NSW, stormwater drains are managed by the local council. The Local Government Act 1993 states that councils must maintain and manage public drainage systems in a safe and efficient manner.
The majority of stormwater drains in Queensland are managed by either the state or local governments, depending on the size of the system. Brisbane City Council is responsible for managing most stormwater drains within its boundaries, while other regional councils have responsibility for their respective areas.
In Northern Territory:
In the Northern Territory, the local government maintains and manages stormwater drains. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources is responsible for setting standards and providing technical advice to councils on stormwater drains' proper maintenance and management.
In South Australia:
SA Water does not manage stormwater networks in regional or metropolitan areas of the state, with this responsibility primarily sitting with local government (councils).
In Tasmania, stormwater drains are usually the responsibility of the local council. The Local Government Act 1993 states that councils must maintain and manage public drainage systems in a safe and efficient manner.
Victoria's stormwater drain responsibility is split between Melbourne Water and the local government. Melbourne Water is responsible for managing large-scale drains, while the local council is responsible for smaller-scale systems across their region.
In Western Australia:
Stormwater drains in Western Australia are managed by either the state or local governments, depending on the size of the system. Local governments are generally responsible for maintaining and managing smaller systems, while Water Corporation WA controls larger municipal drainage systems.
In conclusion, stay on top of your stormwater responsibilities, getting a professional plumber to check the drainage in your home properly and to maintain it is advisable. Ensure any debris or leaves are cleared regularly and avoid throwing anything into stormwater drains that may impair their function. By following these simple steps, you can help keep your neighbourhood water-friendly. Regarding responsibility for stormwater drains, each state has its own regulations, so be sure to familiarise yourself with the rules in your area before carrying out any work on a trough. If you have any questions or need further information, feel free to reach out.