DAR File No. 38387

This rule was published in the April 15, 2014, issue (Vol. 2014, No. 8) of the Utah State Bulletin.

Environmental Quality, Water Quality

Rule R317-550

Rules for Waste Disposal By Liquid Scavenger Operations

Notice of Proposed Rule


DAR File No.: 38387
Filed: 03/31/2014 06:53:06 AM


Purpose of the rule or reason for the change:

The purpose of this amendment is to replace and add some language in existing Rule R317-550 to match similar language and format of newly adopted revised Rule R317-4 concerning onsite wastewater systems.

Summary of the rule or change:

The new draft has made minor changes to parallel definitions, and some content of the newly adopted Rule R317-4. Some of these minor changes include: 1) Definitions: Regulatory Authority replaces Health Officer; Person is revised; Liquid Waste Operator replaces Scavenger; Wastewater Holding Tank replaces Sewage Holding Tank; 2) Liquid Waste Operators must now obtain a permit from the Local Health Department (LHD), replacing old language that they were only obligated to "notify" the LHD, which resulted in various unregulated methods. This new permit shall be renewed at least every three years (this period of renewal is up to the discretion of the LHD, but no more than three years); all other conditions of this permit remain the same as in the previous rule, i.e., name, address, description of vehicles, list of disposal sites used for disposal; and the LHD has the discretion of requiring or not requiring a surety bond and proof of general liability insurance as part of this permit (in the old rule this was worded as "recommended," but this has been replaced with "the regulatory authority may require...."); 3) inspection of equipment and disposal sites, still discretionary upon the LHD, as in previous rule; and 4) all wastewater components, scum, sludge, and liquid waste shall be removed from septic tanks, wastewater holding tanks, chemical toilets, and vault privies.

State statutory or constitutional authorization for this rule:

  • Section 19-5-104

Anticipated cost or savings to:

the state budget:

The state budget is not affected since no additional administrative staff time or resources are anticipated to be needed due to this amendment.

local governments:

This rule amendment requires the LHD to issue permits prior to a liquid waste operation initiating a liquid waste operation. Currently, not all local health departments require licensing. For those few LHDs that don't, they will be required to issue a license when there is a liquid waste operation in their jurisdiction. Costs will be necessary to cover administration of this rule, but ordinances with application fees should cover any of their new costs.

small businesses:

Liquid Waste Operators are required to obtain a permit from a local health department to operate a liquid waste operation. As described in "Local government" above, most operators are required to have a license to operate, but not all do at this time. This exact number of operators not having a license is unknown, due to the current rule, and optional licensing by a LHD.

persons other than small businesses, businesses, or local governmental entities:

Although the new rule exempts homeowners from pumping their own tank, no evidence of them performing this work has ever been reported and the homeowner would still have to contract with a liquid waste operator to transport the waste to an approved disposal site. Therefore, no additional cost will be created with this exemption.

Compliance costs for affected persons:

No difference from the current rule is anticipated. Currently, most LHDs, already require a permit to operate a liquid waste operation.

Comments by the department head on the fiscal impact the rule may have on businesses:

This change is anticipated to have no fiscal impact on businesses that is different from the current rule.

Amanda Smith, Executive Director

The full text of this rule may be inspected, during regular business hours, at the Division of Administrative Rules, or at:

Environmental Quality
Water QualityRoom DEQ, Third Floor
195 N 1950 W

Direct questions regarding this rule to:

  • Judy Etherington at the above address, by phone at 801-536-4344, by FAX at 801-536-4301, or by Internet E-mail at jetherington@utah.gov

Interested persons may present their views on this rule by submitting written comments to the address above no later than 5:00 p.m. on:


This rule may become effective on:


Authorized by:

Walter Baker, Director


R317. Environmental Quality, Water Quality.

R317-550. Rules for [Waste Disposal By]Liquid Waste[Liquid Scavenger] Operations.

R317-550-1. Definitions.

The following definitions shall apply in the interpretation and enforcement of this rule. The word "shall" as used herein indicates a mandatory requirement. The term "should" is intended to mean a recommended or desirable standard.

[1.1]"Chemical Toilet"[-] means a nonflush device wherein the waste is deposited directly into a receptacle containing a solution of water and chemical. It may be housed in a permanent or portable structure.

[1.2]"Collection Vehicle"[-] means any vehicle, tank, trailer, or combination thereof, which provides commercial collection, transportation, storage, or disposal of any waste[ as] defined [in]as [Section 1.14]liquid waste.

[1.3]"Division"[-] means the Utah Division of Water Quality.[

1.4 Health Officer - means the Director of a local health department or his authorized representative.]

[1.5]"Liquid Waste[Scavenger] Operation"[-] means any business activity or solicitation by which liquid wastes are collected, transported, stored, or disposed of by a collection vehicle. This shall include, but not be limited to, the cleaning out of septic tanks, [sewage]wastewater holding tanks, chemical toilets, and vault privies.

"Liquid Waste Operator" means any person who conducts the business of a liquid waste operation.

"Liquid Waste" means, for the purpose of this rule, domestic wastewater or sewage.

[1.6]"Local Health Department"[-] means a [city-]county or multi[-]county local health department established under Title 26A.

[1.7]"Person"[-] means an individual, trust, firm, estate, company, corporation, partnership, association, state, state or federal agency or entity, municipality, commission, or political subdivision of a state [(]as defined in Section 19-1-103[)].

[1.8]"Public Health Hazard"[-] means, for the purpose of this rule, a condition whereby there are sufficient types and amounts of biological, chemical, or physical agents relating to wastes that[which] are likely to cause human illness, disorders, or disability. These include, but are not limited to, pathogenic viruses and bacteria, parasites, and toxic chemicals.

"Regulatory Authority" means either the Utah Division of Water Quality or the local health department having jurisdiction.[

1.9 Scavenger Operator - means any person who conducts the business of a liquid scavenger operation.]

[1.10]"Septic Tank[s]"[-] means a watertight receptacle which receives the discharge of a drainage system or part thereof, designed and constructed so as to retain solids, digest organic matter through a period of detention, and allow the liquids to discharge into soil outside of the tank through an underground absorption system.[

1.11 Sewage Holding Tank - means a watertight receptacle which receives water-carried wastes from the discharge of a drainage system and retains such wastes until removal and subsequent disposal by scavenger operation.]

[1.12]"Tank"[-] means any container that when placed on a vehicle is used to transport wastes removed from a septic tank, wastewater[sewage] holding tank, chemical toilet. or vault privy.

[1.13]"Vault Privy"[-] means any facility wherein the waste [in]is deposited without flushing, into a permanently-installed, watertight, vault or receptacle, which is usually installed below ground.[

1.14 Wastes - means, for the purpose of this rule, domestic wastewater or sewage which is normally deposited in or retained for disposal in septic tanks, sewage holding tank, chemical toilets, or vault toilets.]

"Wastewater Holding Tank" means a watertight receptacle designed to receive and store liquid wastes to facilitate treatment at another location.


R317-550-2. Authority, Purpose and Scope of Rule.

2.1. These rules are administered by the division authorized by Title 19 Chapter 5.

2.2[1]. The collection, storage, transportation, and disposal of all liquid wastes by liquid waste[scavenger]operators shall be accomplished in a sanitary manner which does not create a public health hazard or nuisance, or adversely affect the quality of the waters of the State.

2.3[2].  A liquid waste operator shall have a current permit issued by the local health department having jurisdiction[It shall be unlawful for any person to engage in or conduct a liquid scavenger operation unless the person notifies the local health department in which the liquid scavenger operation is conducted] prior to [commencement]initiating [of ]a liquid [scavenger]waste operation[ and thereafter on an annual basis.

2.3 Nothing in this rule shall be constructed to require a private property owner to notify the local health department prior to his removing wastes from his own septic tank, sewage holding tank, chemical toilet, or vault privy. However, all such wastes must be collected and transported in such a manner that they will not create a nuisance or public health hazard, or will adversely affect the quality of the waters of the State, and must be disposed of in accordance with the provisions of this rule].


R317-550-3. [Procedures for Notification of Local Health Departments]Permitting Requirements.

3.1. Prior to initiating [operation of]a liquid [scavenger services]waste operation, the liquid waste operator shall make application to the local health department having jurisdiction for a permit to operate. The application[notify the local health department by filing a notification form. The notification form shall be provided by the local health department and] shall include[, but not limited to, the following]:

A. Name, address, and telephone number of applicant. If applicant is a partnership, the names and addresses of the partners;[,] and if a corporation, the name and address of the corporation.

B. Name and address of the [place(s)]places of business if different from above.

C. Applicant shall state the number of collection vehicles to be used, description of vehicles (make, model, year, and license number), tank capacity, and any other related information required by the [health officer]local health department.

D. A list of all sites shall be provided [which]that are [to]used for disposal of wastes resulting from the liquid [scavenger]waste operation. Applicants may be required by the [local health department]regulatory authority to provide proof of permission to dispose of wastes at such sites.[

E. Standard notification forms are available through the Division of Water Quality.]

3.2. [It is recommended that all applications for liquid scavenger operations be accompanied by a surety bond issued by a corporate surety company authorized to conduct business in the State of Utah, and covering the period for which the permit is issued. The bond amount should be $5000 for all scavenger operations conducting business within the State of Utah. The health officer should be the bond obligee, and the bond should be for the benefit and purpose to protect all persons damaged by faulty workmanship resulting from scavenger operation, and to guarantee payment of monies owing incident to these rules. Such bonds should be conditioned upon their performance of the services in a workmanlike and hygienic manner.]To protect all persons damaged by faulty workmanship resulting from liquid waste operations, and to guarantee payment of monies owing incident to these regulations, the regulatory authority may require a surety bond and proof of general liability insurance as part of the application.

3.3. [Liquid scavenger operators shall notify the local health department in writing on an annual basis before March 1st of each year of their intent to continue operation.]The operating permit shall be renewed at least every 3 years.


R317-550-4. Inspection of [Scavenger]Liquid Waste Operations.

4.1. [Upon receipt of a notification to conduct a liquid scavenger operation, the health officer]The regulatory authority may inspect all equipment and, if necessary, disposal sites to be used in connection with the liquid [scavenger]waste operation.[  Routine inspections may be made at any reasonable time by the health officer in order to insure compliance with these rules.]


R317-550-5. Collection Vehicle Requirements.

5.1. Collection vehicle identification requirements shall be determined by the local health department having jurisdiction.

5.2. Each collection vehicle shall conform to the following minimum specification:

A. Tanks shall be of watertight construction, fully enclosed, [strong enough for all conditions of operation]durable, and shall be provided with suitable covers to prevent spillage during [transit]transport. The capacity of the tank [on]in U.S. gallons shall be determined accurately by calculation, metering, or as specified by the manufacturer, and shall be plainly, legibly, and permanently marked or stamped on the exterior of the tank.

B. The collection vehicle shall be equipped with either a positive displacement pump or other type of pump which will not allow any spillage and [which ]will be self-priming.

C. The discharge connection of the tank shall be provided with a valve and with a threaded screw cap or other acceptable sealing device. When not in use, the valve shall be closed and the threaded screw[s] cap or sealing device shall be in place to prevent accidental leakage or discharge.

5.3. When in use, pumping equipment shall be so operated that a public health hazard or nuisance will not be created. Each collection vehicle should at all times be supplied with a pressurized wash water tank, disinfectant, and implements needed for cleanup purposes in the event of accidental spillage of waste on the ground. The operator shall ensure that such spills are cleaned and disinfected in such a manner to render them harmless to human and animals.

5.4. Sewage hoses on collection vehicles shall be thoroughly drained, capped, and stored in such a manner that they will not create a public health hazard or nuisance.

5.5. Tanks used for collection, transportation, and storage of wastes shall be so constructed that the exterior can be easily cleaned.

5.6. All collection vehicles, when parked and not in use, shall be protected and maintained in such a manner that they will not promote an odor nuisance, the breeding of insects, the attraction of rodents, or create any other public health hazard or nuisance.


R317-550-6. Conduct of Liquid Waste[Scavenger] Operations, Including Submission of Reports.

6.1. All services rendered by the liquid waste[scavenger] operation shall be conducted in a sanitary[workmanlike] manner that does not create a public health hazard or nuisance[and the property where the services are rendered shall be left in a sanitary condition]. After the services are rendered, the [scavenger]liquid waste operator shall furnish the customer with a written receipt [which]that carries the business name and address of the liquid [scavenger]waste operation.

6.2. [Recommendations for the pumping and maintenance of septic tanks and sewage holding tanks may be found in the rule for Individual Wastewater Disposal Systems.  ]All [three ]wastewater components, consisting of scum, sludge, and liquid waste, [should]shall be removed from septic tanks, wastewater holding tanks, chemical toilets, and vault privies. See Subsection R317-4-14 Appendix E for septic tank operation and maintenance.[these tanks to provide long-term benefit.]

6.3. The liquid [scavenger]waste operation shall submit summary data[ forms] of their business activity to the [local health department having jurisdiction]regulatory authority as often as required by that agency. Summary data [from ]information shall include[, but not limited to]:

A. Source of all waste pumped on each occurrence, including name and address of source. If necessary, this information may be provided in code and made available for inspection at the business address of the liquid [scavenger]waste operation.

B. Specific type of waste disposal; system services on each occurrence.

C. Quantity of wastes pumped on each occurrence.

D. Name and location of authorized disposal site where [pumpings]liquid wastes were deposited for disposal.


R317-550-7. Disposal of Wastes at Approved Locations.

7.1. All wastes collected shall be disposed [of ]in accordance with the rules and regulations of the Division and the local health department having jurisdiction. Disposal shall be accomplished by one of the following methods:

A. Into a public sewer system at the place and point in the system designated and approved by the appropriate authority.

B. Into a landfill which has been approved by the Director of the Division of Solid and Hazardous Waste for disposal of such wastes and in accordance with Rules R315-301 through R315-320, and with concurrence by the local health department.

C. Land disposal, in accordance with the provisions of Subsection R317-8-1.10([9]10), if approved by the Director and with the concurrence of the local health department.

7.2. No waste shall be deposited into a sewerage [collection ]system[, a sewage] or treatment works[plant, or waste stabilization pond (lagoon), which] that will have a detrimental effect on the[ir] overall operation.

7.3. Under no circumstances shall dumping of wastes be permitted into any public or private lake, pond, stream, river, watercourse, or any other body of water, or onto any public or private land which has not been designated as an approved disposal site.

7.4. It shall be unlawful for any liquid waste [scavenger]operation to transport, treat, store, or dispose of hazardous wastes as defined by 19-6-102(7) without complying with all provisions of Rules R315-1 through R315-301.


R317-550-8. Failure to Comply With Rules.

Any person failing to comply with these rules shall be subject to action as specified in Section 19-5-115.


KEY: dumping of wastes, liquid waste, pollution

Date of Enactment or Last Substantive Amendment: [August 29, 2001]2014

Notice of Continuation: June 18, 2012

Authorizing, and Implemented or Interpreted Law: 19-5-104


Additional Information

More information about a Notice of Proposed Rule is available online.

The Portable Document Format (PDF) version of the Bulletin is the official version. The PDF version of this issue is available at https://rules.utah.gov/publicat/bull-pdf/2014/b20140415.pdf. The HTML edition of the Bulletin is a convenience copy. Any discrepancy between the PDF version and HTML version is resolved in favor of the PDF version.

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For questions regarding the content or application of this rule, please contact Judy Etherington at the above address, by phone at 801-536-4344, by FAX at 801-536-4301, or by Internet E-mail at jetherington@utah.gov.  For questions about the rulemaking process, please contact the Division of Administrative Rules.