Springer Nature is making SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 research free. View research | View latest news | Sign up for updates

Travel of microorganisms from a septic tile


An investigation was carried out to monitor the horizontal travel of indicator microorganism from the end of a septic tile in the direction of groundwater flow. The microorganism levels exhibited a declining trend with distance away from the tile end. This investigation also revealed that because the unsaturated depth of soil available for microorganism vertical travel was limited, relatively high levels of organisms were found in the groundwater even at a horizontal distance of 15.25 m from the end of the septic tile.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.


  1. Brink, N.: 1962, Ingem VetenskAkad, Medd. (Sweden), 133.

  2. Caldwell, E. L.: 1938a, J. Infectious Diseases 62, 225.

  3. Caldwell, E. L.: 1938b, J. Infectious Diseases 62, 272.

  4. Canadian Drinking Water Standards and Objectives: 1968, Department of National Health and Welfare, Ottawa, Canada.

  5. Malin, A. and Snellgrove, J.: 1958, Lab-Pract. 7, 219.

  6. Patterson, J. W., Minear, R. A., and Nedved, T. K.: 1971, Septic Tanks and the Environment, Illinois Institute for Environmental Quality, Chicago, Illinois.

  7. Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater: 1971, 13th edn. American Public Health Association, Washington, D.C.

  8. Stead, F. M.: 1939, J. American Waterworks Assoc. 31, 714.

  9. Viraraghavan, T. and Warnock, R. G.: 1975, Can. J. Public Health 66, 213.

  10. Viraraghavan, T. and Warnock, R. G.: 1976, J. American Waterworks Assoc. 68, 611.

  11. Wagner, E. G. and Lanoix, J. N.: 1958, Excreta Disposal for Rural Areas and Small Communities, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland.

Download references

Author information

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Viraraghavan, T. Travel of microorganisms from a septic tile. Water Air Soil Pollut 9, 355–362 (1978).

Download citation


  • Groundwater Flow
  • Horizontal Distance
  • Indicator Microorganism
  • Vertical Travel
  • Horizontal Travel