SPOTLIGHT – Environmental Health | Clatsop County Oregon
environmental Health

SPOTLIGHT – Environmental Health | Clatsop County Oregon

Safe food. Safe water. Safe communities.

Clatsop County Environmental Health works to ensure that residents and visitors can rely on basic services with confidence.

Environmental Health covers a wide range of services, facilities and activities including:

  • Food service establishments: Plan reviews, licensing and twice-yearly inspections for 354 establishments
  • Public swimming pools and spas: Twice-yearly inspections of 84 pools/spas inspected
  • Lodging/travel accommodations – Inspections of 122 accommodations every 2 years
  • Schools & daycare facilities – 13 schools
  • Small community drinking water systems – Surveys of 26 water systems every 3-5 years
  • Onsite Septic systems – Approximately 240 permits issued per year
  • Household hazardous waste: Eight collection events each year – Saturdays throughout the year.


“We are focused on building capacity around Environmental Health programs pertaining to safe food, water, and sanitation to better serve Clatsop County residents and visitors,” said Lucas Marshal, environmental health supervisor.

“We envision an Environmental Health team that takes great pride in the work they do, has consistency in their practices and the services they provide, and most importantly cares about the community served.”

Foodservice facilities, such as restaurants, mobile food units, and caterers serve a large and varied part of the population.  Environmental Health’s role is to minimize or eliminate potentially harmful situations in public environments and to contain and stop the spread of diseases if and when they appear. Through education and routine inspections, we hope to make Clatsop County a safe and healthy environment for residents and guests to enjoy.

Inspections result in scores that are posted on the Oregon Health Authority’s online database, along with reports detailing any violations.

Environmental Health responds to citizen concerns about restaurants made through the online Licensed Facility Complaint Form. The online form, found on the county website, allows members of the public to inform the county about suspected illnesses they’ve experienced related to restaurants or other eating establishments.

Environmental Health inspects public pools and spas. The importance of the pool inspection program was highlighted earlier this year when Environmental Health recommended temporary closures of a large number of hotel swimming facilities after inspections found they failed to follow state rules governing proper water treatment procedures. Inspection reports for pools can also be found on the OHA website.

A major addition to Environmental Health is the Household Hazardous Waste collection facility in Astoria. The HHW facility offers monthly collection events (8) Saturdays per year where residents can drop off old household chemicals such as paint, pesticides, solvents, and other cleaning products, removing potential hazards from homes and ensuring their safe disposal.

Environmental Health’s Drinking Water Program administers drinking water quality standards for approximately 26 public water systems within Clatsop County. The program provides regulatory and technical services to public water systems to reduce health risks and increase compliance with drinking water standards. The program focuses on preventing water contamination to assure safe drinking water for Clatsop County residents and guests.

Clatsop County Environmental Health oversees the Onsite Septic Program on behalf of the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) for all septic systems in Clatsop County. In areas where public sewer is not available, property owners must install septic systems for treating residential or commercial wastewater. Environmental Health issues approximately 240 septic permits each year.

For complete list of all Environmental Health programs, go to the Clatsop County website.