ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH SERVICES
The mission of our Environmental Health Services is to
provide adequate and reasonable control to eliminate and/or prevent the
development of environmental conditions that are hazardous to health and
safety, and to promote the economical and planned development of the
land and water resources in the county through permits and education.
Our Local Environmental Protection Plan (LEPP) develops, implements, and
enforces environmental programs in Saline, Ottawa, Ellsworth, & Lincoln
counties, including wastewater disposal, well protection, solid waste
disposal, non-point source pollution and subdivision development.
Contact Environmental Health Services at 785-826-6604.
Additional web resources can be found on our Resources page.
tests private water supplies for contaminants. We issue permits for new
water wells and inspect existing wells. In addition, we conduct
inspections, issues permits, and provides consultation on private sewage
Water Well Testing
All water samples must be collected by a sanitarian. Collection days are
Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday by appointment. If you have a well, we
recommend to test the water once a year.
Call 785-826-6604 to schedule a test.
If the entire series is run, the fee is $125.00.
Detailed water test description
Water Well Siting
County regulations require that before a domestic water well is drilled,
a permit must be obtained from the Health Department. By locating wells
away from sources of pollution before they are drilled, chances of
contamination are reduced. Call 826-6604 to set up a meeting at the
proposed well site.
Well Separation Distances
All new septic systems installed in Saline County must be permitted by
the Health Department. This includes a soil profile, the designing of a
proper system, and proper installation. Each step is monitored and
recorded by a sanitarian. Systems may include traditional septic tank
and laterals, lagoons, or alternative systems.
Any system that is being installed to replace an
existing system also needs to be permitted by the Health Department.
Occasionally a system will fail, or as in older homes, may have a system
designed improperly, and illegally discharging sewage. A sanitarian
needs to review the site to make recommendations for correcting the
The department maintains records of systems permitted by
us from 1962 to present. This can occasionally help new homeowners
locate their systems.
Sanitarians also are available for consultation on
existing systems and review and approve the septic system capabilities
of all new housing developments in the county.
Lagoon Separation Distances and
Lagoon Installation and Maintenence
Conducting a Soil Profile
The determination of what type of onsite wastewater system is required
can be found in the physical properties of the soil that is available.
There are many variables in the physical characteristics of soil. The
two characteristics that are most important in determining wastewater
systems are soil texture and soil structure.
Soil texture is the size of particles that make up the
soil. The traditional method for determining particle size is by
separating the particles into three size ranges-sand, silt, and clay.
Sand particles are the largest, (.05 to 2 mm), followed by silt
particles, (.002 to 0.5 mm) with clay particles being the smallest
particles (less than .002 mm). As the particles get smaller, they will
pack together tighter, and fill in the pore space. Pore space is the
space between soil particles where water is transported. Obviously, soil
with a large percent of sand particles will transport much more water
than a clay soil.
Soil structure is the shape and arrangement of soil
particles into peds. Peds are small clusters of soil particles. It is
possible to get very technical in terms of soil structure, but for the
purpose of onsite wastewater, soil structure will be very simplified.
Structure will be described in the four terms - weak, moderate, strong,
and massive. Weak, moderate, and strong structure refer to how well soil
particles form in to the peds. The stronger the particles form the peds,
the more pore space is available for the transportation of water.
Massive is a term used to describe a complete lack of structure, where
all the particles form one large mass. This situation will to transport
water very well.
Conducting the test (PDF,
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As of January 2010, the Health Department no longer offers a food
service inspection program, food handler safety training, or complaint
investigation. Contact the Kansas Department of Agriculture at
785-296-5600 for all food service and safety issues. To make a
complaint, the Kansas Department of Agriculture would like you to use
the following form at
inspections and water tests on private wells & private wastewater
systems at the time of sale, as well as producing reports for lenders,
homeowners, and real estate agents.
Fees for loan approval inspections are:
Frequently, Environmental Health is asked by a mortgage institution
or realtor for a loan approval These are conducted for homes which have
a private water well supply and/or a private wastewater disposal system,
such as a lagoon or septic system. For water wells, the sanitarian
inspects the well for proper construction and location, then samples the
water for bacteria, nitrates, and chlorides. The wastewater disposal
system is checked for surfacing and illegal construction or discharge.
Reports are made to the appropriate person or agency.
For loan approval appointment, call 826-6604.
Appointments should be made at least one week in advance. Please call
Healthy Homes Program
We perform home inspections on
residences where children live when they have elevated levels of lead in
their blood, and complete a review of home activities, then submit an
extensive report on options for families to reduce risks and levels on
lead in the child’s environment.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has set limits of
lead in children’s blood. The higher the amount of lead in the blood,
the more active the doctor becomes to find the source and reduce the
child’s exposure. At the level of 10 ug/dL, Environmental Health is
contacted and a sanitarian conducts a home lead investigation.
Results of the investigation are explained to the
parents of the child and recommendations made on an individual basis. A
report is also sent to the child’s doctor. For general information about
lead in homes, or to request a home lead investigation, contact
Environmental Health at 826-6604.
County Sanitation Codes
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Rodent and Insect Control and Consultation
Environmental Health examines sites and makes
recommendations where rodents present a problem. In some cases,
corrective action may be taken. The department also does larviciding for
mosquitoes, which involves treatment of standing water for mosquito
larvae during their growing season. Adult mosquito trapping and
monitoring is another service of Environmental Health. Sanitarians also are
available to consult with those having problems with rodents and insects
on their property.
Child Care and Foster Care Facility Inspections
Once a year, a sanitarian conducts an inspection on the environmental
setting of child care facilities. This includes adequate space, food
preparation and storage, overall maintenance and sanitation of
restrooms, living space, recreation areas, and lockers, as well as
lighting and ventilation. This inspection is included in the
comprehensive inspection required by the State.
leading cause of lung cancer in nonsmokers, is a colorless, odorless gas
that occurs naturally in the environment. Approximately 1 out of every
15 American homes contains elevated levels of radon.
Test your home for radon -- it's easy and inexpensive and could be
critical to your health.
The Salina-Saline County Health Department
is offering free radon test kits to Salina residents for a limited time.
Call Environmental Health at 826-6604 for more information on how to
pick up a kit.