Motor Vehicle Waste Disposal Well Fact Sheet
This guidance document is advisory in nature but is binding on an agency until amended by such agency. A guidance document does not include internal procedural documents that only affect the internal operations of the agency and does not impose additional requirements or penalties on regulated parties or include confidential information or rules and regulations made in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act. If you believe that this guidance document imposes additional requirements or penalties on regulated parties, you may request a review of the document.

Form #:  12-032
Guidance Documents
Revised: 12/12/16

Title 122 - Rules and Regulations for Underground Injection and Mineral Production Wells prohibits the construction and/or use of motor vehicle disposal wells. A disposal well is an underground structure that accepts fluids and allows them to seep into the surrounding soil. “Motor vehicle” means mechanized equipment used in agriculture, construction, industrial activities, maintenance, recreation, or transportation. An example of a prohibited motor vehicle waste disposal well is a floor drain in an automotive shop that is connected to a septic system. Motor vehicle wastes can be anything that leaks, drips or is washed off any type of mechanized equipment. Title 124 - Rules and Regulations for the Design, Operation, and Maintenance of Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems also prohibits the connection of a floor drain from a maintenance shop, or the discharge of motor vehicle wastes or maintenance shop wastes, to a septic system or to a soil absorption system.



Motor vehicle waste disposal wells that are currently in use must be properly closed and comply with applicable plugging and abandonment requirements of Title 122. Prior to any work being performed, an abandonment plan must be submitted to the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality (NDEQ) Underground Injection Control (UIC) program for review and approval. Options for closure may include, but are not limited to:
  • Connecting to a city sanitary sewer, a holding tank, or a synthetically lined lagoon.
  • Permanently plugging the discharge line and using the remaining sump to collect wastes.
  • Permanently plugging the drain (including the sump) with concrete and run a “dry” shop.
Note: These options also apply to new construction where a floor drain may be necessary. Local requirements may be more restrictive and are separate from the requirements found in Title 122 and Title 124. Please be advised, the connection of a floor drain to a holding tank, or a synthetically lined lagoon requires a permit under Title 124.


Wastes accumulated in a holding tank, synthetically lined lagoon or a sump converted to a holding tank will eventually require removal. In most cases, a sample will need to be collected and analyzed to ensure the material is not a hazardous waste. As a rule, hazardous waste cannot be disposed at landfills or wastewater treatment plants.