Do you know the difference between a sewer and a catch basin? Both play an important role in keeping water flowing in West Lincoln, but each has a unique function. It is important for all citizens to be aware of what should – and should not – go down the drain. Not knowing can significantly impact the Township’s infrastructure.



Sewers collect wastewater that leaves homes and buildings through a drain, such as a toilet, sink, washer or shower, and helps move it to a wastewater treatment plant.

Only toilet paper and human waste should ever be flushed down the drain – sanitary products and wipes (including those marketed as “flushable”) belong in the garbage.

Catch Basins

Catch Basin

A catch basin is a curbside drain that collects stormwater and run-off from outdoor water use, such as lawn watering and car washing, and carries it to local waterways.

In West Lincoln, there are many catch basins that keep stormwater moving. These drainage systems need to be regularly maintained to keep West Lincoln’s water clean and safe.

Although Township staff clean and maintain catch basins on the road allowance, residents with catch basins in their yard are responsible for keeping them free of debris. This is an important step in reducing the chances of flooding during heavy rainfalls.


Stormwater is rainwater and melted snow that runs off lawns, streets and other land surfaces and can pick up all sorts of pollutants before eventually finding its way back into the rivers and lakes.

Hard surfaces such as pavements and parking lots can prevent stormwater run-off from being properly absorbed into the ground. This kind of excess stormwater can have a negative impact on citizens and the environment. 

Why is it so important to understand the difference between a sewer and a catch basin?

Catch basins do not connect to the same system as the drains in your house. That’s why keeping chemicals, fertilizers, yard waste, food, construction materials and other objects from going into catch basins is critical in protecting the Township’s infrastructure and environment.

Sometimes, excess water may fail to drain from the streets near a home or business, mostly when the surface of a catch basin is blocked by litter or debris. By ensuring catch basins are clear at the street level, citizens can help do their part.

To report sewer or street flooding, call 905-957-3346 ext. 5139 between 9:00 am and 4:30 pm or submit a service request to our Public Works Department.

For assistance after hours, call 1-877-552-5579.