Resident Pollution Prevention

Placentia residents take pride in a clean city and understand that everyone is a partner in preventing pollution. Read on to get key stormwater guidelines for the home. Additional free educational materials including brochures, posters, and multimedia materials are available for download at:

What Is Stormwater Pollution? 

Stormwater pollution is urban runoff water that has picked up pollutants as it flows through the storm drain system, a network of channels, gutters and pipes that collect runoff from city streets, neighborhoods, farms, construction sites and parking lots, and empties directly into local waterways.

Unlike sewage, which goes to treatment plants, urban runoff flows untreated through the storm drain system. Anything thrown, swept or poured into the street, gutter or a catch basin, the curbside openings that lead into the storm drain system, can flow directly into our channels, creeks, bays and ocean. This includes pollutants like trash, pet waste, cigarette butts, motor oil, anti-freeze, runoff from pesticides and fertilizers, paint from brushes and containers rinsed in the gutter and toxic household chemicals.

Toxic pollutants, whether from the home, from lawn and garden substances, or from vehicle runoff, can end up in the City's sewer system and contaminate the community's water table or its area oceans and beaches. 

Common Pollutants 

Runoff pollutants come from many different sources such as oil on our roads, trash dropped on the streets, and sediment from construction sites. These pollutants can cause algal blooms, bacterial growth, harm to animals and humans, dirty beaches, and beach closures. Prevention is the key. 

StormWater Pollutants

Pollution Prevention Tips


Remember these tips when working with your vehicle to keep our storm drains clean:

  • Call (800) 449-7587 to arrange a free used oil pick-up.
  • Clean engines at a do-it-yourself car wash where the drainage is not connected to the storm drain.
  • Conserve water when washing your car, and use biodegradable soap.
  • Fix vehicle leaks, such as oil and antifreeze.
  • Recycle motor oil at a used oil recycling facility or car repair shop.


When cleaning, remember these tips to keep storm drains pollutant-free:

  • Dispose of Household Hazardous Wastes for free at the Orange County facility.
  • Pick up pet waste and place it in the black trash container.
  • Put trash in the can instead of the gutter.
  • Sweep driveways and sidewalks.
  • Throw litter and recyclables into proper disposal cans.
  • Use a broom rather than a hose to clean up garden clippings.
  • Use kitty litter or other absorbent materials to clean up spills.

Miscellaneous Tips

Additional tips to remember include:

  • Consider, control, and conserve recyclable and reusable materials.
  • Contact the City of Placentia's Public Works Department about full catch basins.
  • Use pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers in accordance with label instructions. Do not apply them before the rain, and be sure to dispose of them properly.

Helping keep toxic solutions and debris out of sewer systems is a task that is important to the health and well-being of our community. For more information about storm drain pollutants, please contact us at (714) 993-8131.