Private Sewer Laterals

Sewer Lateral Ordinance

In order to protect the environment and local waterways from untreated sewage coming from undetected sewer leaks or sanitary sewer overflows caused by deteriorated or poorly maintained laterals, the Watsonville Municipal Code Section 6-3.508 addresses Maintenance of sanitary sewer laterals and, more specifically, Section (d), “Testing of Sanitary Sewer Laterals”.

Permits are required for any construction, repair or modification of any part of a sewer lateral.

The City of Watsonville Sanitary Sewer Lateral Maintenance Requirements address:

Sewer Overflows: If a sewer overflow originating at your property occurs, you are required to immediately stop the overflow and have sewer lateral blockages, breaks, and other deficiencies repaired.

Sanitary Sewer Laterals serving Single Units:  Sewer lateral repairs shall be made within ten (10) working days of overflow. 

Should a second overflow occur within a twelve (12) month period, it is required that the sanitary sewer lateral be televised and repaired or replaced and certified in writing, by a licensed plumber with a current business license in the City of Watsonville, to be in good working order and free of obstructions and/or breaks.

Private Sanitary Sewer Collection Systems:  If a sanitary sewer overflow occurs, the property owner shall cause the overflow to stop immediately and have any sewer lateral blockages, breaks, and other deficiencies permanently repaired by a licensed plumber with a current business license in the City of Watsonville within five (5) working days. 

The property owner shall submit a written report to the City describing the cause of the overflow and the remedial actions taken to repair the sanitary sewer collection system. The Director or it’s his/her assigned designee shall evaluate the report and make a determination as to the acceptability of the remedial actions and whether additional remedial actions, including full or partial replacement of the sanitary sewer collection system, shall be taken.

Time of Sale Inspections

Upon change of ownership and before the close of escrow, the property owner must have the sewer lateral inspected by a licensed plumber with a current business license in the City of Watsonville if sewer lateral was documented as constructed or inspected more than 25 years prior. The lateral is to be certified to be in good working order and, if it is not, repairs must be done before the close of escrow.

The City of Watsonville Time of Sale Inspection Form is to be completed and submitted, along with a lateral video, to the City of Watsonville Public Works and Utilities Department to verify compliance.

Sewer Lateral Image

To report a sewer overflow in the  Watsonville City limits

 Call (831) 768-3133. After hours, please call (831) 471-1151.

Contacts

City of Watsonville Public Works & Utilities Department

Call: (831)768-3100

Email: publicworks@cityofwatsonville.org