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In Harris County there are approximately 450 municipal sewage wastewater treatment plants and 212 active industrial wastewater treatment facilities permitted by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality to discharge treated wastewater to receiving streams throughout Harris County.  Many facilities in Harris County also have permits to discharge treated storm water after a significant rain event.

The Water Surveillance Section is responsible for monitoring the quality of those discharges by conducting inspections of wastewater treatment facilities and by collecting samples of the discharges and returning the samples to the Pollution Control Sevices Department lab for analysis.  Violation notices are issued when the collected samples do not meet the permit water quality parameters. 

The Water Surveillance Section also responds to citizen complaints related to unauthorized discharges of sewage, grey water or other industrial wastewaters.   


There is a manhole on my street that always overflows when it rains.  Who can I call?

If the manhole is located in the unincorporated area of Harris County call the primary complaint line at 713-920-2831.  If the manhole is located in the city of Houston dial 311 for assistance.


Sewage is coming out of a pipe at my apartment complex and going down my side walk.  In a similar situation a neighbor has sewage coming out of their house and into my yard.  Who can I call? 

Please contact the  primary complaint line at 713-920-2831.


My neighbor has a failing septic system.  Who should I call to report the problem? 

Please contact Harris County Engineering Department at 713-274-3900.


What diseases can be caused by exposure to sewage?

Sewage contains bacteria, funguses, parasites and viruses that can cause a variety of intestinal, lung and other infections including gastroenteritis, typhoid fever, cholera and hepatitis.



Harris County Engineering Department

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