A Storm’s Impact on Community Water Quality

A Storm’s Impact on Community Water Quality

Hoosiers are no strangers to harsh storms. While we mostly consider the visible damage strong winds and heavy rain can do to our homes and neighborhoods, many don’t think about how a storm can impact water supplies. Let’s take a look at how Indiana storms can affect the water we depend on every day.

Storms Increase Runoff

We’ve all seen a heavy rain flow through storm ditches and rush down the street into storm drains – all this water runs off nearby areas and accumulates before flowing through drainage systems back into waterways.

As these heavy rains flow off your home and other hard surfaces, through your yard, into the street, and down to the drainage system, water can pick up everything in its path. Asphalt from roofing shingles, lawn chemicals, and oil slicks in the street – these contaminants and countless others are washed into the local waterways by storm runoff. As many Hoosiers live near large agricultural operations, there is a likelihood that pesticides, herbicides, and other chemicals are also running off into the waterways.

Storm Water and Flooding

In developed areas, rain and snow runoff typically falls and runs across impervious surfaces—meaning water can’t pass through them. This not only limits replenishment of groundwater sources, but also adds to flooding, pollution of streams and lakes, and in many urban areas, sewer overflows into surrounding waterways. Flooding can also negatively impact streams and rivers and the aquatic habitats that support fish, plants and other animals.

Indiana American Water is working hard every day to protect our valuable water resources that can be affected by Hoosier storms. We regularly invest in our water and wastewater infrastructure to ensure access to a reliable, quality water supply, while at the same time ensuring we are protecting and preserving our sources of supply. Learn more at https://amwater.com/inaw/water-quality/system-updates.