June 30, 2010

Wednesday’s Water News: Millions of Gallons of Sewage Pours into Mississippi River

Posted in Illinois, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon at 10:37 am by joepaul1

A wastewater pump in St. Louis failed, allowing millions of gallons of sewage to spill directly into the Mississippi River. City officials have fixed the pump and claim the drinking water is safe. However, state EPA officials were notified late and are still investigating the situation.

A hot springs Resort in Ukiah, Oregon has been fined over $500,000 due to sewage violations over the last ten years. Officials say the resort had been operating illegal sewage lagoons and failing to treat its wastewater properly. The resulting sewage was leaking into nearby creeks and contaminating the water.

Some 60,000 vehicles that would normally take Hoosick Street in Troy, New York are being detoured today, and for the next several days, as the city fixes the apparent water main break that flooded the streets on Tuesday evening.

A restraining order has been issues to stop a condo project, in Lake Ozark, Missouri from dumping sewer sludge into the Lake of the Ozarks. Inspections by the state Department of Natural Resources showed the wastewater treatment system was not operating properly allowing sludge and visible solids to pass through to the Lake.

Stimulus Spotlight
Thanks to the economic stimulus package, residents of the 14th Ward in Chicago, Illinois are going to have new pipes installed underneath the city to help wastewater flow. The new pipes will cost $2.4 million and will be replacing pipes from 1910.

Sewer Rate News
Benton, Illinois
Bossier City, Louisiana
Clayton, North Carolina
Haverhill, Massachusetts
Morestown, New Jersey

June 29, 2010

Tuesday’s Water News: Miami’s Sewers in Need of Repair

Posted in Florida, Hawaii, Indiana, Michigan, Nebraska, Vermont, Virginia, Washington at 5:26 pm by egold24

Sewer system infrastructure in Miami, Florida is in dire need of repair. The underground piping system is over 40 years old and is reaching the end of its useful life. However, the city lacks the necessary capital to undertake such sweeping renewal of its 13,600 miles of underground piping for water and sewage.

A large water main break has buckled part of a road in Evansville, Indiana. The large pipe began gushing early Tuesday morning, but officials are hastily repairing it. Roads near the break were closed while repairs while being made.

A water main break in North Platte, Nebraska flooded a parking lot over the weekend. The pipe had been installed in the 1950’s and has since received no renewal or replacement. The clean-up crews discovered a huge hole in the side of the pipe, posing the notion that similar pipes of that age may be at risk.

Stimulus Spotlight
A series of construction projects are underway in Cape Charles, Virginia including the construction of a new wastewater treatment plant with stimulus money funding most of the project.

The outgoing City Manager in Buchanan, Michigan says her proudest accomplishment was securing federal stimulus dollars for ongoing water and sewer improvements that will save the city about $3 million or about 40 percent of the project’s cost.

Sewer Rate News
Honolulu, Hawaii
Rainier, Washington
Rutland, Vermont
South Bend, Indiana

June 28, 2010

Monday’s Water News: Service Restored in Draper, Utah After Water Main Break, Sinkhole

Posted in California, Indiana, Massachusetts, Missouri, Oregon, South Carolina, Utah, Washington at 9:27 pm by egold24

Water has been restored to all residents and businesses in Draper, Utah affected by a water main break but officials warn the water may be a “little brownish or murky colored” at first. It has taken most of the day to repair a water main break and sinkhole extending several feet wide.

In California, a sewage spill has rendered part of Orange County’s Aliso Creek Beach inaccessible to the public. Because of health risks, all recreational activities have been prohibited until the Orange County Health Care Agency decides the water is no longer contaminated by sewage.

Several residents in Rhineland, Missouri awoke to find raw sewage had spilled into their homes on Saturday morning. Due to excessive rainfall produced by storms Friday night, a sewer bypass pump failed and allowed overflow of raw sewage into the residential area.

The Williamette Falls Locks at West Linn, Oregon is closed due to a sewage spill at an adjacent property. According to operations crews, a sewer main ruptured over the weekend and allowed raw sewage to leak into one of the locks. The Army Corps of Engineers are assisting with the clean up.

Stimulus Spotlight
The Lummi Indian Reservation in Washington has received an $11.5 million loan in order to finance major upgrades to the sewer system in Bellingham, Washington . Much of the system is 30+ years old, making the construction for renewal of the systems necessary.

Sewer Rate News
Columbia, South Carolina
Fort Wayne, Indiana
Morgan, Utah
Salem, Massachusetts

June 25, 2010

Friday’s Water News: Sewer Upgades for Florida Keys Need More Funding

Posted in Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, National, New York, North Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia at 9:38 am by joepaul1

Despite Florida Gov. Charlie Crist’s (I) authorization this month of as much as $200 million for a long-term effort to provide upgraded sewer systems for the Florida Keys, the prospects are poor for funding in total the estimated $937-million project.

John Hosch of Cartersville, Georgia is suing the state of West Virginia for not building proper wastewater facilities to live up to the Clean Water Act. Hosch ran into problems when he sold lots of a residential plan he was developing and was then denied a permit to build a sewage system. This denial was due to a lack of proper wastewater treatment facilities. The buyers of the lots sued him, so he, in turn, has sued the state.

Contaminants like e-coli are believed to be in Wilkinson Creek after sewage leaks in Bradley County, Tennessee. Officials are looking into the problem and will determine the cause and cost of fixing it.

After heavy rains, basements in Chicago, Illinois were flooded with raw sewage. The rains overran the septic system of the city, and residents are being forced to clean up the mess left behind.

Stimulus Spotlight
An upsurge in stimulus water projects will begin this summer. Last year, there were 129 projects provided by the stimulus, this year, that number skyrockets to 2,800. Considering state needs for waste and drinking water infrastructure are above $500 billion, the increase is a necessity for overwhelmed state and local budgets.

States and local governments are slashing spending on infrastructure projects so fast that even federal stimulus money hasn’t filled in the gap. Investment in infrastructure is on pace to drop almost 7% this year to $269 billion, according to a USA TODAY analysis of federal data. That would be the first decline in state and local construction spending since the Census Bureau started tracking in 1993.

Sewer Rate News
Marion Township, Michigan
Rochester, New York
South Bend, Indiana
Taylorsville, North Carolina
Vigo County, Indiana

June 24, 2010

Thursday’s Water News: 20 Million Gallons of Sewage Pours into Biscane Bay

Posted in Delaware, Florida, Indiana, Maryland, Missouri, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania at 11:38 am by joepaul1

Authorities were forced to flood Biscayne Bay in Miami, Florida with 20 million gallons of raw sewage after a leak last weekend. The leak had been held up in Biscayne Canal, but authorities, realizing that there was too much sewage to clean, were forced to let it flow into the popular bay. Swimming has been banned until further notice due to contamination.

More than 130,000 gallons of sewagw was released into waterways across Missouri last week. The cause of the Kansas City leak has been determined as being heavy rains and mechanical malfunctions, but the cause of other spills remains a mystery to officials.

The Borough Council in Everson, Pennsylvania has sent a letter criticizing the Westmoreland Fayette Municipal Sewage Authority’s assessment of the sewage system in Everson. Among their complaints are that the Authority’s report states that the sewage system in Everson is 50 years old, while Everson has data saying it was built in 1912.

Floods in Clinton County, Indiana have resulted in widespread sewage overflows. The water is said to be contaminated and residents are advised to avoid contact until further notice.

Stimulus Spotlight
Thanks to an influx of more than $16 million in federal stimulus loans and grants, Sussex County, Delaware engineers and staff are busy preparing to spend more than $50 million overall in fiscal 2010 on sewer projects.

Sewer Rate News
Albany, New York
Baltimore, Maryland
Brookline, Massachusetts
Defiance, Ohio

June 23, 2010

Wednesday’s Water News: Storms Lead to Water Main Breaks, Flooding on Indian Reservation

Posted in Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Washington, West Virginia at 8:35 pm by egold24

After nearly five inches of rainfall in the past few days, an Indian reservation in Great Falls, Montana is faced with severe flooding. Ten different water mains ruptured and broke from the massive quantity of rainwater, leaving widespread flooding and water damage and no drinking water for the tribe’s natives.

Kentucky state Rep. Larry Clark is among a bipartisan group of state lawmakers pushing for a Louisville-area pilot program on regionalization of wastewater treatment

Officials in Carroll County, Maryland are asking citizens to watch what they flush after an accumulation of plastics, towels, rubber gloves, and grease backed up sewer lines and resulted in 70,000 gallons of spilled raw sewage. The sewage managed to flow into two separate streams during the overflow.

In central Pennsylvania, the Williamsport Sewer Authority has agreed to make improvements that will reduce overflows into the Susquehanna River as part of a settlement agreement filed in federal court.
Stimulus Spotlight
Nearly $1 million of federal stimulus money has been granted to Bloomington, Iowa for construction projects on streets and sewer lines. About $298,000 will be committed to projects pertaining to sewer lines and storm sewer drains.

Sewer Rate News
Astoria, Oregon
Charleston, West Virginia
Fernley, Nevada
Issaquah, Washington

June 22, 2010

Tuesday’s Water News: Water Still Unsafe in Harrison, Arkansas

Posted in Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Missouri, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Texas, Vermont, Virginia at 1:39 pm by joepaul1

A break in the sewage system all the way back in January has still not been fixed in Harrison, Arkansas. Officials are worried that contaminated water may flow from nearby Mill Creek into the Buffalo River. A lack of funding is blamed for the delay in repairs.

Residents in Lynchburg, Virginia are dealing with raw sewage spills in their backyards. This problem has been going on for months and officials are investigating. It remains unknown how extensive the spills are and what effect they are having on local drinking water.

Another sewage spill has hit Kansas City, Missouri with 95,000 gallons of raw sewage pouring into Kernodle Lake after a sewer line break. Officials are required to give an extensive report on the damage done to the water within five days.

Heavy rains in Richmond, Indiana have caused sewage and wastewater spills. The sewage flowed into the East fork of the nearby Whitewater River. Residents have been advised to avoid contact with the water for 72 hours.

Stimulus Spotlight
Thanks to the stimulus package, Port Richmond, New York’s sewage treatment plant will get a $29 million upgrade. It is being funded with tax-free bonds included in the economic stimulus package.

Water users in Shaftsbury, Vermont are expected to save approximately $1,000 each over the next 20 years in paying off a bond used to upgrade water lines after the town was approved to receive $217,000 in federal stimulus money to pay off more than half of the $425,000 bond administered through the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund.

Sewer Rate News
Conyngham, Pennsylvania
Houston, Texas
Olanta, North Carolina
Toccoa, Georgia

June 21, 2010

Monday’s Water News: Storms Lead to 23.6 Million Gallon Sewer Overflow in Milwaukee

Posted in Delaware, Florida, Indiana, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, South Carolina, Wisconsin at 5:26 pm by egold24

In Wisconsin, it was announced on Friday that combined sanitary and storm sewers in central Milwaukee and eastern Shorewood released an estimated 23.6 million gallons of a sewage and storm water mix to local rivers and Lake Michigan after an  intense rain storm on June 15.

Twenty million gallons of sewage spilled into the Biscayne Bay on Saturday in Miami, Florida. A 72-inch sewer pipe burst and deposited raw sewage into the bay.

Officials have issued a boil order for portions of East Chicago, Indiana after a water main break early Monday. The water main break also created a sink hole that swallowed up a car that was parked on the street.

Stimulus Spotlight
Nekoosa, Wisconsin is set to receive more than $3 million in federal funds for wastewater treatment improvements from the economic stimulus. The $2.47 million loan and a $607,000 grant will help with upgrades to Nekoosa’s treatment plant and associated infrastructure.

A stimulus loan and grant will finance water and wastewater upgrades in Freeport, South Carolina. Freeport will receive a $1.35 million loan and a $1.17 million grant to finance the upgrades apportioned by the ARRA.

Sewer Rate News
Farmington, Michigan
Georgetown, Delaware
Malden, Massachusetts
Waterloo, Iowa

June 18, 2010

Friday’s Water News: 162,000 Gallons of Sewage Spills in Missouri

Posted in California, Connecticut, Indiana, Missouri, North Carolina, Washington at 9:44 am by joepaul1

After a power outage, the wastewater plant near Ozark, Missouri spilled 162,000 gallons of sewage into nearby Finley River. State officials have ordered the river water to be tested for contamination.

Residents are advised to boil their water for a minute before drinking it in Bellingham, Washington after a recent sewage spill. An estimated 60,000 to 160,000 gallons of sewage poured into local Lake Whatcom after a blockage between pipes caused them to burst.

Two sewers in Durham, North Carolina spilled wastewater after a blockage. The first spilled 4,300 gallons into nearby Ellerbe Creek and the second spilled 2,500 gallons into nearby Little Lick Creek. City officials are still investigating the incident.

Stimulus Spotlight
Thanks to the stimulus package, a 133,000 dollar federal grant is available for building a new pump out station for sewage expulsion in Danbury, Connecticut.

Sewer Rate News
Santa Barbara, California
Seattle, Washington
Issaquah, Washington
Plymouth, Indiana

June 17, 2010

Thursday’s Water News: Old Main Fails in Seattle Leaving Sinkhole

Posted in California, Massachusetts, Missouri, Oregon, South Carolina, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin at 1:00 pm by joepaul1

A break in a water main in a Seattle neighborhood left area residents and businesses without any water for a night, and a big, gaping sinkhole in the middle of a busy street. Seattle Public Utilities says a very old 16-inch pipe, the workhorse of the water system, cracked. The failed main is believed to be at least 90 years old.

City officials in Kansas City, Missouri were put on notice by the state Department of Natural Resources after several violations of state law. These included failure to clean up a sewage spill, pollution into a local pond, and the spill itself.

A temporary fix for sewage overflows in Weirton, West Virginia has failed, causing costs estimated at $100,000. The attempt was made to stop the flow of raw wastewater into the Ohio River temporarily. Now officials are working on a long term solution, which is much more costly.

Raw sewage poured out onto a local street in Columbia, South Carolina. The spill was blamed on a grease and grime buildup over an extended period of time. No timeline was given as to when the mess would be cleaned up.

Stimulus Spotlight
Last month, Green Bay, Wisconsin issued an additional $15 million in Build America Bonds as part of the economic stimulus package to pay for more sewer improvements and a parking facility.

Sewer Rate News
Appomattox, Virginia
Bend, Oregon
Fall River, Massachusetts
Richmond, California

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