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Storm Water Infiltration Testing

Stormwater management is now a requirement for any project that involves earth disturbance of one acre or more.  The federal Clean Streams Law provides the legal foundation for water quality protection, restoration, and water resources management in Pennsylvania.  The Pennsylvania Storm Water Management Act of 1978 provides the legal basis for statewide stormwater management. Local governments implement specific regulations for stormwater management and the Department of Environmental Protection is responsible for administering the provisions of the Act. 

Preconstruction Stormwater Management

Stormwater management focuses on preserving pre-construction conditions through on-site management using a variety of structural Infiltration BMPs. The object of stormwater management is:

  • controlling  the volume of runoff during rainfall events.

  • improving water quality.

  • managing all aspects of stormwater volume, quality, and groundwater recharge.

Required Testing

Our qualified professionals conduct pre-design site reviews, preliminary, and detailed design, and post-design testing utilizing double ring  infiltrometers  (ASTM Standard D3385) or percolation testing.


Testing is conducted on individual lots or multi-unit residential, commercial, or industrial projects to verify subsurface soil characteristics and determine actual in-situ infiltration rates at various depths.

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National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Permit

Regulations require individual land development projects to obtain National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permits for certain stormwater discharge activities. 

Penn’s Trail Environmental, LLC provides the technical information that will allow your engineer to design facilities that meet the federal, state and local constraints.  

Penn's Trail will help you to define critical site features such as:

  • depth to water table.

  • depth to bedrock.

  • depth to  restrictive soil horizons.


We will inventory special concerns including:

  • wetlands

  • other special habitat areas

  • geological formations (especially carbonate/karst)

  • steep slopes 

Infiltration Testing

Infiltration Testing is a four-step process to obtain the necessary data for the design of the stormwater management plan:

  1. Background Evaluation - identifies potential BMP locations and testing locations based on available published and site-specific data

  2. Test Pit (Deep Hole) Observation - identifies limiting conditions

  3. Infiltration Testing

  4. Determination of an infiltration rate for design calculations

We recommend that sites be evaluated early in the land development process to afford the project engineer the greatest latitude possible with respect to layout. Our team of qualified soil scientists and biologists help your engineer develop the appropriate anti-degradation measures and provide testing needed to validate post-construction Stormwater Management plans. Penn’s Trail provides reports that demonstrate compliance with applicable standards.  All stormwater management studies are performed in accordance with ASTM, EPA, regional or local regulatory standards under the oversight of appropriate agency.

No comprehensive stormwater management approach can effectively rely on one methodology alone to implement effective water quality and quantity measures.  Our processes seek to analyze the site, review the alternatives that may be implemented and suggest possible options for each plan.  Detailed field investigations are conducted by our professionals at each site.  We provide timely and professional evaluations to allow you to obtain the necessary approvals with the fewest problems. Penn's Trail Environmental, LLC is expanding our services to include Stormwater Compliance Monitoring/Management (in addition to our already established Sewage Disposal/Discharge, Wetland Mitigation & Sustainability Compliance services), to help our clients deal with the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection’s reporting requirements associated with A General Permits to Discharge Stormwater (PAG-XX). The enforcement of the requirements varies greatly from municipality to municipality across the state. Being proactive is advantageous in light of the increasingly stringent regulations.

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