September 23, 2019

Cranbrook, BC (September 23, 2019) -- With the fall approaching, residents with swimming pools will begin the task of draining the water.  Residents are reminded that swimming pool water cannot be drained into the City’s sanitary sewer system based on the City of Cranbrook’s own building bylaw and plumbing and sewage bylaw.

It is also important to notify the City when and where you will be draining your pool or hot tub. Often when residents see a large amount of water running down the street, the City is called and water crews with Public Works are mobilized expecting a water leak or broken water main. Notifying the City in advance eliminates the chances of staff needing to respond, which saves the City time and money.

Under the Fisheries Act of Canada, pool and hot tub water should not be released into a storm sewer without being treated first, as pool water is usually highly toxic to fish and other aquatic life due to the high levels of chlorine, bromine, salt or other commonly used chemicals.   The City of Cranbrook storm sewers are emptied into streams that have fish and other aquatic life.

It is best to slowly discharge treated pool and hot tub water to the ground, so it soaks away without flooding neighboring properties, streets or alleys. This should not be done during a rainy day.

Dechlorination of water can be achieved by dechlorination tablets and exposure to sunlight. The water should be then tested to ensure that chemical levels are as close to zero as possible before discharging to a storm sewer. Please contact the City before discharging a pool to the storm sewer to determine the adequacy of the storm sewer in your area to handle the water volume. When discharging to a storm sewer the water should be discharged close as practicable to the storm sewer and should not run over sidewalks, driveways, or roadways.  Ensure that the storm sewer is not clogged and is receiving water and there is no erosion to property.

Saltwater pools have such high levels of chloride that this water cannot be discharged to the storm sewer; it must be hauled away by a licensed hauler.

Information on how to safely remove chemicals from your pool water before you drain them can be found by contacting the manufacturer, etc.

If you have questions, please contact the City by calling 311 or by email at

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