Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Stormwater Sydney provides information on common stormwater terms, local environmental practises as well as our Terms & Conditions and privacy policy.

Terms & Conditions

Stormwater Sydney has a standard set of terms and conditions applicable to all its contracts. These terms and conditions can be found on the following link.

Terms and ConditionsDownload

Privacy Policy

Stormwater Sydney is serious about its approach to privacy. Our privacy policy can be found on the attached link.


Residential Guide to Stormwater

Public-Guide-to-Stormwater-Drainage-print was developed by Witheridge, G. of Catchments & Creeks Pty Ltd. The publication provides an exceptional guide to all things stormwater.

Local Requirements

What are the Environmental Requirements?

Within NSW Stormwater management is regulated by several authorities. These include the NSW EPA, Sydney Water (in Sydney Basin) and Local Councils. The various websites of the specific authorities can provide specific details. 

What are my Council Requirements?

All Councils though do require the installation of stormwater devices on all new premises. These requirements usually include a Section 88 Instrument requiring ongoing maintenance of any devices across the life of those devices. 

Many Councils have different requirements which make it hard to comply with. Most Councils publish their requirements on their web sites. Stormwater Sydney has identified the requirements of all Councils, which we utilise on our inspection and Audits.

What is best practice in Stormwater Management?

Stormwater NSW has produced a best practice guide for the operation and maintenance of stormwater management devices. Stormwater Sydney has adopted this as our baseline standard for all works. 

Why are OSD devices with confined spaces more expensive than without?

Some stormwater devices include underground tanks with restricted access and the potential to build up of dangerous gases, hence increasing WHS risks.

Such devices require specialist staff and equipment to ensure safe entry. In the event that we are not aware of a confined space, we may be required to charge a cancellation and rebook the appointment with additional resources.  

Stormwater Terms


Any action that reduces factors such as the level of intensity of peak stormwater discharge, pollutant concentrations or loads, during storms or floods.


The process of sucking up or drawing in of a liquid by a porous substance.

Access hole

An opening constructed in a structure to permit human access for the purpose of construction, inspection and/or maintenance. This term is replacing MANHOLE.

Allotment drainage

A system of field gullies, access chambers and underground pipes constructed within private property to convey flows through and from allotments.

Artificial wetland

A water treatment system utilising wetland processes that do not necessarily reflect the natural environment, and where significantly high levels of maintenance are required to achieve their design performance. Examples may include some constructed sub-surface flow wetlands (i.e. gravel bed biological filters).

Baffled pit

A modified stormwater pit fitted with baffles that are specifically designed to encourage heavy sediments and floating debris to remain in the pit.

Best practice environmental management

The management of activity in a manner that achieves ongoing minimisation of environmental harm through cost-effective measures assessed against the measures currently used nationally and internationally for the activity.

Detention basin

A basin designed to temporarily hold storm or floodwaters, and release such waters in a controlled manner to attenuate outflows. No water is retained within the basin between storm or flood events.

Detention system

Any stormwater detention management system—basin, parking lot, depressed grassy area, rooftop storage, buried or aboveground tank—used to temporarily detain storm or floodwaters for the purposes of delaying or attenuating outflows from a site or catchment.

Diversion drain

A drain that transports stormwater runoff from the 5 shoulders of a road or table drain to a disposal area.



A constructed channel or conduit used for drainage purposes.

Grass swale

A shallow, low-gradient, grass-lined drainage channel used to convey and treat shallow, concentrated stormwater runoff. The swale may or may not contain a subsoil drainage system. Grass swales treat stormwater by settling, filtration and infiltration; they remove pollutants such as sediment, grit, nutrients and hydrocarbons.


A grid of metal or other material used to prevent debris 2* from entering a drain or pit while allowing pedestrians
and vehicles to pass safely over the opening.

Litter rack

A grill, grate or other barrier located across a channel or pipes to trap litter and debris. The bars may be vertical, horizontal or angled (relative to the direction of inflow) depending on hydraulic and environmental requirements,


Routine work required to maintain existing works and systems in a safe and functional condition.


On-Site Detention or On-Site Stormwater Detention


The point at which water discharges from a river, creek or other flow line; lake, tidal basin or drainage depression; or pipe, channel, dam or other hydrologic structure.


A structure or wall built across a channel, drain or watercourse to raise the water level to allow diversion or measurement of discharge rate.

Weirs may be either sharp-crested or broad-crested, and may operate in either a state of free discharge, or a submerged or drowned state.

Stormwater Sydney