Valdosta Daily Times

Local News

April 16, 2014

Sewage problems persist

VALDOSTA — Early Tuesday morning, Valdosta became saturated when the area received approximately three inches of rain from 4 a.m. to noon. As of 3 p.m. Tuesday, 11 manholes throughout the City of Valdosta have spilled 286,500 gallons of wastewater into local waterways, and this number will continue to rise.

The city states 10 of the 11 overflows were still ongoing, as of 3 p.m. Tuesday, and estimated the amount spilled for each manhole. These major spills entered the waters of the state and have been reported to the Environmental Protection Division:

Two manholes in the 600 block of Scott Drive overflowed, and the estimate of the overflow into Sugar Creek is 63,000 gallons and 6,000 gallons respectively. Current status: still overflowing.

A manhole in the 1200 block of Lake Drive overflowed an estimated 31,500 gallons in Two Mile Branch. Current status: still overflowing.

A manhole in the 4100 block of Bemiss Road overflowed an estimated 18,000 gallons into Cherry Creek. Current status: still overflowing.

One manhole in the 800 block of Gornto Road has overflowed an estimated 15,000 into Two Mile Branch. Current status: still overflowing.

Two manholes on Remer Lane overflowed into Sugar Creek and overflowed an estimated 99,000 gallons and 6,000 gallons respectively.  Current status: still overflowing.

One manhole in the 1700 block of Gordon Street has spilled an estimated 6,000 gallons into Sugar Creek. Current status: still overflowing.

A manhole at 1100 Jo Ree Street has overflowed an estimated 13,500 into One Mile Branch. Current status: still overflowing.

A manhole in the 600 block of Cypress Street has overflowed an estimated 22,500 gallons into Knights Creek. Current status: still overflowing.

A manhole in the 2400 block of Meadowbrook Drive overflowed an estimated 6,000 gallons into Sugar Creek. The overflow was stopped at 12 p.m., on April 15.

Even though the spill on Cypress Street was observed by the city at 3 p.m., when the Times arrived to that manhole at 3:45 p.m. there were no signs warning the public of a sewage spill.

The city stated that despite the heavy rain, the wastewater treatment plants did not overflow, or violate any permits.

“The Mud Creek and Withlacoochee Wastewater Treatment Plants remained in compliance and effectively processed the excess flows at the facilities, a direct result of over $2.5 million in sanitary sewer system improvements made recently,” the city states.

Sementha Mathews, Valdosta's public information officer said, “The plants are processing more than we ever thought they could. It was processing almost 17 million gallons per day, today, and that's a huge amount considering it's built for a peak flow of 12 million gallons per day.”

On Tuesday, complaints about manhole spills in Quitman were investigated by the Times and two active spills were found with no signs posted informing residents of a spill.

Quitman City Manager, J.D. Herring said he did not know of any spills, but said maybe his Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator, John Thursby knew about it.

Thursby said Quitman had two wastewater spills. “There's one on N. Jefferson St. and there's one on Walker Street,” Thursby said. “The EPD has been notified. The health department has been notified, and a public notice has been posted at city hall.”

As for signs not being posted, Thursby said, “They're being put up, we hadn't got to them right there, they are being put in place now.”

When heavy rains hit Quitman, these two manholes released approximately 10,000 gallons per manhole, Thursby states.

To relieve the situation, Thursby said, “We're doing some investigations trying to find out where we're getting cross connections in the system right there. We're working at it, there's only two of us in my department, and we are working at trying to find a solution.”

Text Only
Local News
  • Clay Griner.jpeg Griner wins Lowndes commission runoff

    A long nine-week runoff election between Clay Griner and G. Norman Bennett came to an end Tuesday night with Griner beating Bennett by 1,060 votes, with approximately 70 provisional ballots left to count.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • 20140722-Runoff_Voting003.jpg State Senate District 8 too close to call

    The race for State Senate District 8 appeared too close to call as of The Times print deadline late Tuesday night.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Senate Georgia_Stew.jpg Perdue defeats Kingston in Georgia Senate runoff

    Businessman David Perdue has defeated longtime Rep. Jack Kingston in the Republican runoff for Georgia’s U.S. Senate nomination, setting up a matchup against Democratic nominee Michelle Nunn that will help determine which party controls the Senate for the final years of the Obama administration.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • County OKs $1.6 million for water-treatment equipment

    By a divided vote, the Lowndes County Commission approved spending $1,638,000 to purchase two pieces of equipment to improve the county’s water quality as per an agreement with the federal Environmental Protection Agency.

    July 23, 2014

  • Baytree Animal Hospital LB copy.JPG Animal hospital named Business of the Week

    Baytree Animal Hospital was named Leading Business of the Week by the  Valdosta-Lowndes Chamber of Commerce for July 14.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Gavel-courtroom.jpg Water treatment plant discussed

    The Lowndes County Board of Commissioners discussed purchasing two pieces of equipment for the Alapaha Water Treatment Plant and the Spring Creek System for a total of $1,638,000 during its Monday work session and is expected to vote on the issue tonight.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • education.jpg Charter school petition denied

    Both the Valdosta City and Lowndes County school boards unanimously denied the joint charter petition from Scintilla Charter Academy during their respective meetings Monday evening.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • echols_alapapa.jpg WWALS gets grant from river network

    The Willacoochee, Withlacoochee, Alapaha, and Little River Systems Watershed Coalition, Inc. (WWALS) received a $500 Alapaha Water Trail Grant from the Georgia River Network

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • 140718-ARJim2.jpg Teacher at home anywhere in the world

    Variety is the spice of life. South Georgia is home to a diverse group of people, each with a unique life story. One man with glorious tales of travel and selfless volunteer work is Jim Kokoruda.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • fire2a.jpg Blaze damages North Lowndes home

    Lowndes County Fire Rescue responded to a fire call Sunday at 3756 Cross Creek Circle near Bemiss Road.

    July 20, 2014 2 Photos

Top News

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