Valdosta Daily Times

Local News

March 19, 2014

1,033,500 gallons and counting

Sewage spills reported by city in 24 hours

VALDOSTA — The City of Valdosta reported more than one million gallons of untreated wastewater from the sewage system have spilled into several waterways around the community following nearly five inches of rain locally.

So far, 1,033,500 gallons of wastewater have spilled and several sites are still overflowing, while others have been stopped and repaired.

On Monday, The Times was alerted to manhole overflows and sewage spills in the Meadowbrook Drive area, the same area that has been hard hit by spills since 2008. Residents could not speak to The Times due to their ongoing lawsuit, filed in 2013, against the city, but The Times was able to photograph several areas of wastewater overflow into nearby Sugar Creek.

The city stated Monday it had 24 hours to assess the totals and alert the public, in accordance with Environmental Protection Agency rules, and on Tuesday

morning, issued a press release detailing the spills and amounts.

"The city’s wastewater treatment plants remain in compliance and effectively processed the excess flows at the facilities," according to the release. "However, ongoing inflow and infiltration of stormwater into the wastewater collection system due to the saturated soils and high ground water table caused manhole overflows in several areas of the city, on March 17.

“These major spills entered the waters of the state and have been reported to the Environmental Protection Division.”

The list of spills reported by the City of Valdosta:

· Two manholes in the 2400 block of Meadowbrook Drive overflowed into Sugar Creek. One overflow is estimated at 103,500 gallons, and the other is estimated at 69,000 gallons. Current status: still overflowing.

· Two manholes in the 2400 block of Meadowbrook Drive overflowed into Two Mile Branch. The estimated volume from these two manholes is 3,000 gallons. Current status: stopped.

· A manhole in the 600 block of Scott Drive overflowed, and the estimate of the overflow in Sugar Creek is 138,000 gallons. Current status: still overflowing.

· A residential cleanout overflowed in the 2500 block of Berkley Drive. Wastewater entered the stormwater collection system and discharged an estimated 3,000 gallons into Two Mile Branch. Current status: stopped.

· Wastewater from a manhole overflow on Lake Drive entered Two Mile Branch. The estimated volume is 207,000 gallons. Current status: still overflowing.

· Two manholes overflowed in the area between Remer Lane and Rouse Road. Wastewater from these manholes entered One Mile Branch and is estimated at 414,000 gallons. Current status: still overflowing.

· A manhole on the west side of Bemiss Road in the vicinity of Skipper Bridge Road overflowed, and wastewater entered Cherry Creek near Skipper Bridge Road. The estimated volume is 27,000 gallons. Current status: stopped.

· A manhole at the intersection of Mystic Street and Cypress Street overflowed. Wastewater entered the separate storm sewer system (MS4), which is a tributary to Knights Creek. The estimated volume is 69,000 gallons. Current status: still overflowing.

The city’s public information officer, Sementha Mathews, stated that upstream and downstream sampling has begun in the above locations to collect and document bacteria levels in the various impacted waterways. 

“Public notice signs have been posted downstream from all spill locations, and the public is advised to avoid any contact with these areas.”

Mathews also stated that the city is continuing to smoke test the wastewater system to pinpoint issues, but it will take four years for all of the testing to be completed.

The city is replacing the gravity-fed sewage lines with a $32 million force-main project and has plans to move the Withlacoochee Wastewater Treatment Plant upstream to higher ground beginning in late 2014.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • 140724-LAT1.jpg Little Actors Theatre ready for summer show

    Since 2004, the Little Actors Theatre has provided a place for children ages 6 to 19 to express themselves through acting.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • 072414-MichelleNunn003.jpeg Michelle Nunn visits Valdosta

    The day after learning that her Republican challenger would be David Perdue, Democratic U.S. Senate hopeful Michelle Nunn kicked off her Common Sense and Collaboration Tour Wednesday by meeting with business owners in Atlanta, Athens and Macon and continued her tour Thursday morning by visiting the David S. Waller Unit facility of the Boys and Girls Club of Valdosta.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • lunch.jpg Valdosta One Lunch feeds summer-hungry kids

    Hunger is a concept that many people associate with third-world countries, not their hometown. However, in Valdosta, hunger is real. To combat this hunger, a group of Valdostans have created Valdosta One Lunch, a program that distributes bagged meals to children in need.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • thumbs up.jpeg Moody squadron commander reaches milestone

    The 75th Fighter Squadron commander hit a career milestone July 17, by surpassing 3,000 flight hours in an A-10C Thunderbolt II.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • water.jpg New equipment expected to deal with Lowndes water violations

    The Lowndes County Commission’s recent approval of $1.6 million for water-treatment equipment is expected to counter a past series of water-quality violations within the county.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • 142314-Goodwill.jpg Goodwill hosts the Mexican Consulate

    Mexican citizens living in South Georgia have spent this week lining up at the Valdosta Goodwill to meet with the Mexican Consulate to obtain Mexican government issued identification.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • 140723-Tree001.jpg Chamber plants 100th centennial tree

    Founded in September 1912, the Valdosta-Lowndes County Chamber of Commerce is one of the largest chambers in the state.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • 140723 - Operation M#10E3C7.JPG Veterans First

    With Moody Air Force Base expecting to lose 300 to 400 personnel due to government cutbacks, area organizations are working with military personnel about to enter the civilian work force.

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • Lowndes increases millage rate

    For the first time since 1999, the Lowndes County Commission voted Wednesday to increase the millage rate.

    July 24, 2014

  • dui memorial 1.jpg Memorial honors woman killed in DUI case

    More than a week after the man responsible for her death was sentenced to five years in jail, a memorial sign has been placed at the site where Sheila Foster-Lamb was hit and killed by an impaired driver while she was on her way to work.

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

Top News
Poll

School starts again in about two weeks. What do you think?

It's still summer. School starts too soon.
Seems like the right time to return.
Abolish summer recess. Make school year-round.
     View Results