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Report Problems

Help Prevent Water Pollution By Reporting Problems

What goes down Tacoma's storm drains is not treated and empties directly into local waterways. Prompt reporting of stormwater pollution can go a long way to helping keep our local waterways healthy and clean.


The City encourages its residents to always be on the lookout for potential pollution from illicit discharges, which includes anything other than stormwater that enters the drainage system. You should report the following activities if they are draining directly into, or upstream of, City storm drains, ditches, creeks, lakes or Commencement Bay:

  • Uncontrolled, muddy construction site runoff
  • Accidental spills
  • Lawn watering, car washing, power washing sidewalks or buildings, chlorinated swimming pool dewatering
  • People dumping or washing away oil, paint, chemicals, garbage, cigarette butts or other waste into the street or down the storm drain

Other clues of illicit discharges to look for in or around storm drains or waterways, and report if you see them:

  • Oily sheen or colored liquid
  • Chemical or sewage smell
  • Foamy lather
  • Garbage accumulation
  • Dead organisms

Report potential stormwater pollution to 3-1-1 or dial (253) 591-5000 (if calling outside of Tacoma city limits).


Useful information to report:

  • Who is reporting and how can you be reached for additional questions?
  • Who discharged/spilled the material (if known)? When and where?
  • What was it? Does it have an usual odor or color?
  • How much appears to have been released?
  • Is anyone cleaning it up?