Water News, January 16-23, 2013

Top Stories

Pennsylvania: Governor Tom Corbett announced Tuesday the investment of $82 million in seven drinking water and wastewater projects in 5 counties through the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority (PENNVEST). “While there may be fewer than the usual number of projects approved at today’s PENNVEST Board of Directors’ meeting, they nonetheless represent a significant investment on the part of the commonwealth in our clean water infrastructure,” Corbett said. Of the $82 million total awards, $69 million is for low-interest loans and $13 million is offered as grants.

National: A new public-private program will help cities across the country finance and build resilient integrated urban storm water infrastructure systems in order to prevent damage during future severe weather events, and the Rockefeller Foundation will provide up to $3 million in seed money in just the first two years. Using innovative sustainable infrastructure such as replacing concrete with porous pavement, restoring creeks and wetlands, and increasing tree cover can help cities manage storm water often at a fraction of the cost of upgrading traditional concrete infrastructure, making them more resilient to extreme weather.

Illinois: Governor Pat Quinn was joined by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) Director John Kim, Illinois Finance Authority (IFA) Executive Director Chris Meister, and labor union leaders on Jan. 16 to announce the award of a low-interest, long-term $15 million loan to the city of Chicago to replace about seven miles of drinking water pipeline. In October 2012, Governor Quinn launched the $1 billion Illinois Clean Water Initiative to help local governments overhaul aging drinking water and wastewater treatment plants and pipelines and create or support 28,500 jobs across Illinois.

Failing Systems

Ohio: The Ohio EPA confirms thousands of gallons of raw sewage poured out onto the ground in Fairport Harbor. Some of the sewage made its way to the Grand River, during a sewage spill last week.The incident caught on video by former Lake County Utilities employee Jeff Gatchel.

Michigan: About 2,400 gallons of untreated raw sewage overflowed from a manhole in Kalamazoo Saturday afternoon. Kalamazoo Department of Public Services personnel were notified at 1 p.m. of the situation at the Crystal Lane sanitary sewer at 640 Weaver Ave. This is the fourth recent spill in the county.

Oregon: A sanitary sewer pipe near the 800 block of Welcome Way SE was damaged on Monday morning, causing around 3000 gallons of raw sewage to spill on the ground and possibly into Pringle Creek.  According to the Public Works department for the City of Salem, the sanitary sewer pipe was damaged by rocks and debris around 8:30 a.m. and it is unclear whether the spill leaked into nearby Pringle Creek.

California: A clean-water advocacy group is suing Modesto, saying the city is in violation of the federal Clean Water Act because of its more than 310 sewage spills since 2007, which have released nearly 379,000 gallons of raw or partially treated sewage. The lawsuit claims that about 242,000 gallons of the sewage reached surface water, such as Dry Creek, and the Tuolumne and San Joaquin rivers, which feed into the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.

Kentucky: The Louisville Metropolitan Sewer District says 95 million gallons of storm and wastewater overflowed into Pond and Mill creeks after a “major failure” Sunday shut down the Derek R. Guthrie Water Quality Treatment Center in southwest Jefferson County. The failure of the plant’s mechanical screening system at about 8:30 a.m. Sunday came after more than three inches of rain over two days, the sewer district said.

Georgia: A ‘significant’ amount of rain caused the Oostanaula River to rise and overtop a number of manholes behind the Green Acres subdivision – causing a sewage spill of approximately 23,400 gallons, according to a Rome Water and Sewer report. The spill occurred on January 18 and was corrected on Jan 20. The sewage flowed into an unnamed creek leading to the Oostanaula River. The City of Rome Water Reclamation Facilities Lab has been notified to begin stream monitoring for one year.

Washington: Below freezing temperatures are blamed for a water main break that left 100 homes without water overnight. It happened at 67th Avenue Northeast and 88th Place. Repair crews worked for hours to jack hammer their way to the broken pipe. The crew chief says the break was most likely weather related.

California: A water line break sent water gushing down a La Jolla street Thursday morning, closing it to traffic for much of the day. The line broke in the 9500 block of Town Centre Drive in the UTC area just after 7:30 a.m. The repair was finished late Thursday afternoon. The cause of the break was found to be a corroded two-inch brass bushing. The part had marks that showed it has been leaking for quite some time.

Pennsylvania: A water main break that forced the evacuation of Schuylkill Elementary School students Wednesday is just the latest example of how winter’s shifting temperatures can play havoc with the aging infrastructure beneath Pennsylvania’s older towns. Tuesday night, Pottstown Public Works Director Doug Yerger warned that replacing the 82-year-old, 12-inch water main that keeps springing leaks along the same stretch of pipe may require emergency funding.

Maryland: Approximately 18 homes were without water service Wednesday for several hours as the Carroll County Bureau of Utilities worked to repair a broken water main in Eldersburg. A 6-inch water main on Slash Pine Court in Eldersburg broke on Wednesday, according the Carroll County Bureau of Utilities. Service was shut down for approximately 6 hours.  Street restoration would be required following repair to the water main, officials said.

Iowa: A high school in northwest Iowa canceled classes due to a water main break. The Sioux City Journal said officials at West High School canceled classes Wednesday morning due to a leak near the southeast part of the school. Officials say it’s unclear how long it will take to fix the break.

Massachusetts: A water-main break on Blossom Street left a number of houses in the area and on neighboring streets without water for about three hours on Friday, according to Deputy Water Commissioner Denis Meunier. He said the break occurred in a 6-inch main in the vicinity of 185 Blossom St. near Pearl Street, affecting most houses below that address and on Weymouth, Gage and other side streets. Meunier was unsure what caused the 2-foot-long crack lengthwise across the top of the pipe but suggested age played a part.

Illinois: It was quite a mess Friday morning at 3rd and Oak streets in Quincy. A water main break was discovered at around 2:30 a.m. when someone saw water spewing up from underground. The water froze over the pavement and sidewalks because of the cold temperatures.

Pennsylvania: A water main break caused problems for people in Pittsburgh’s Westwood neighborhood early Sunday morning. Officials blocked off Manley Street while utility crews made repairs. A homeowner said his home suffered water damage with a few inches of water sitting in his basement.

California: A water main break forced police officers to shut down a major thoroughfare in San Leandro Saturday. At 4:20 p.m., officers responded to Foothill Boulevard at Carolyn Street where water had completely flooded the road. San Leandro police shut down Foothill between Carolyn and Manchester streets while crews worked to control the roadway flooding. According to CHP, the flooding became so great, the on-ramp onto westbound Interstate 580 from Carolyn Street also was flooded.

Connecticut: An 8″ water main break from a 1964 pipeline was reported on Prospect St. in West Hartford Wednesday. Officials said it  shut down on Kane St. to 266 Prospect. According to MDC officials, the road’s concrete surface and the cold weather will make it longer to repair. More than a dozen businesses were shut down as a result of the break.
Minnesota: City crews in Coon Rapids were left with plenty of clean-up to do Tuesday night after a water main break, officials said. Authorities said the break happened at about 7 p.m. near the 100 block of 122nd Avenue NW in Coon Rapids and sent water shooting seven to eight feet in the air at times. Cold temperatures caused the water that had spilled onto streets in the area to freeze.  City officials said the water main break was likely cold weather related as it was their second issue of the day.

About Clean Water Council

The Clean Water Council (CWC) is a group of national organizations representing underground construction contractors design professionals, manufacturers and suppliers, labor unions and other committed to ensuring a high quality of life through sound environmental infrastructure. Working in concert, CWC's 39 national organizations, advocate federal legislation and policies that will promote clean water and improve the nation's failing infrastructure.​
This entry was posted in California, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Uncategorized, Washington and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Water News, January 16-23, 2013

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