Smoking out illegal sewer connections
Smoking out illegal connectionsLYN HUMPHREYS
A health warning has been issued because an Inglewood stream was contaminated with sewage after recent heavy rain.
And the search is now on to smoke out illegal connections to the wastewater system, which the New Plymouth District Council believes are partly to blame.
The council issued health warnings yesterday for the Kurapete Stream through to its confluence with the Manganui River at Everett Park.
"The sheer volume of water following the rainfall was too much for the pump station and oxidation ponds to handle," council water and wastes manager Mark Hall said yesterday.
The heavy rainfall earlier this week resulted in partially treated wastewater overflowing into the stream, Mr Hall said.
"Until it clears, people should avoid the Kurapete Stream and not swim near where the stream enters the Manganui River at Everett Park." The health warning will be in effect until Wednesday.
The overflow was the result of inflow from illegal stormwater connections to the town's sewerage system and ground water seeping into the pipes through cracks, he said.
About 83mm of rain fell in Inglewood on Saturday and Sunday, resulting in a large flow into the pump station, nearly three times larger than its capacity.
The council is now working on finding the illegal connections to Inglewood's sewer system by pumping smoke through the reticulation.
This method had already tracked down one large illegal connection, he said.
The smoke revealed an illegal connection draining a significant area into the sewer and the landowner was required to rectify the situation, he said.
Work was also underway to examine Inglewood's sewer pipes with CCTV cameras and reline any pipes with cracks in them.
"The more stormwater that we can keep out of the sewer reticulation in Inglewood, the better. We'll have less water volume to pump and treat, and we'll be much less likely to have overflows to the Kurapete Stream, even after heavy rain," Mr Hall said.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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