An estimated total volume of 8000 gallons of untreated wastewater escaped from a manhole at the Wastewater Treatment Plant in West Jefferson on Aug. 21, which caused an estimated 6000 gallons, of the 8000 gallons spilled, to flow into an unnamed tributary that flows into Little Buffalo Creek in the New River Basin.
“We had a few issues and have people in who are working on it,” Town Manager Brantley Price said. “It happened where it comes in to the plant. The pumps quit running after 9 p.m. and water started to back up causing it to rise and enter the creek.”
According to Price, the spill is technically called a bypass due to the fact that the wastewater had been partially treated before entering the stream that feeds into Little Buffalo Creek.
The Division of Water Quality was quickly notified of the event by the Town and is working on reviewing the matter.
North Carolina law requires wastewater treatment systems to verbally report to a Division of Water Resources staff member at a Regional Office, no more than 24 hours following the occurrence or first knowledge of the occurrence of either of the following:
• Any sewer system overflow and/or spill over 1,000 gallons.
• Any sewer system overflow and/or spill, regardless of volume, that reaches surface water.
Price said the matter has been taken care of and things are now working fine at the plant.
“Everything seems to be working fine now,” Price said.
Alan Bulluck can be reached at (336) 846-7164 or on Twitter @albulluck.