Storm Drains

All of us live on a watershed.  In fact, our Groveton community is very unique in that our houses within the GCA boundary are located over three watersheds!   

What is a Watershed?    It’s an area of land that drains into a body of water.  In the GCA community, residents live over 3 watersheds: Cameron Run, Dogue Creek, and Little Hunting Creek (watershed impacts Huntley Meadows as well).  From these watersheds, the runoff flows into the Potomac River, then to the Chesapeake Bay, and out to the Atlantic Ocean.  Notice the oval blue labels on the storm drains within our GCA community.  PLEASE KEEP DEBRIS FROM THE STORM DRAINS TO HELP SAVE OUR ENVIRONMENT.

How does that affect us?  Trash, pet waste, motor oil, anti-freeze, fertilizers, sediment, hazardous waste, and other debris are carried by rain and melting snow or ice along the gutters and into our storm drains.  The water that flows from the storm drains into our local watersheds IS NOT treated.  Nothing is removed from the water.  The debris flows directly from our local watersheds into the Chesapeake Bay.  This type of pollution is the leading cause of water quality deterioration in the Bay.

What can you do?  Make sure nothing goes down the storm drains except water.  Pick up debris, put pet waste and dried out latex paint in the trash.  Sweep up cigarette butts and sediment from the street gutters and then dispose of them in the regular trash pick-up.  Pick up those newspapers in plastic bags left at the curb.  Check the weather forecast before applying chemicals or fertilizers to your lawn.  Wash your car on your lawn or take it to a car wash, rather than washing it on the street where soap, oil, and gasoline could flow into a storm drain.  If you see someone dumping hazardous substances like pesticides and paint into the storm drains, contact the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue at 703-691-2131. 

GCA sponsored the Storm Drain Labeling Project to label approximately 150 storm drains in the GCA boundaries with labels that state:  “No Dumping, Drains to Potomac River” or to the specific watershed name.  The labels are a visual reminder of the dangers of dumping anything into the storm drains.  This activity is recognized as a Community Service Project and service hour credits will be given to students who participate.  All supplies are provided by the Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District with support from the Virginia Department of Transportation.  If you see a storm drain in our area that is missing a label, please contact GCA at 

Click HERE for the Storm Drain Pamphlet.

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