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Water Resources

Ledgewood Circle Sewer Release

CHECK BACK FOR BEACH STATUS UPDATES.


UPDATE FEBRUARY 20, 2024

Crews have conducted two rounds of flushing of the discharge area, and numerous rounds of sampling in different proximate locations. Bacteria levels at the beach have returned to under the EPA limit. At this time, we have removed all warning signs from the beach. We are continuing to monitor this area and take corrective action as needed to prevent a similar discharge.

POSTED FEBRUARY 2, 2024

WHAT HAPPENED:  

A sewage spill was detected and entered the stormwater system. This was caused by a build up of grease by users of the system - which is not an approved or recommended use of our waste disposal systems – and caused a back up of sewage to spill from a private line that was not properly abandoned by the property. The blockage occurred at the intersection of Austin Drive and Home Avenue, which led to it surfacing at Ledgewood Circle and then entering a storm drain which connects to a system that drains to the small stream that empties onto the southern portion of Blanchard/Oakledge Beach. This was initially reported on See Click Fix at 4:31PM on Friday 1/26, which resulted in a delayed City response since  See Click Fix is only monitored Monday thru Friday 7:30AM-4:30PM. We urge residents to call us, including after-hours, for any issues that present a risk to health, property or safety.   

OUR ONGOING RESPONSE:  

Upon seeing the issue notification  on Monday morning 1/29, staff worked to identify the cause of the surfacing water.  Once it was determined to be sewage, staff limed the surface area to disinfect and conducted inspections to determine how far the sewage had travelled. At the same time, staff continued investigation on the cause of the backup eventually leading to the discovery and removal of the grease blockage.  Out of an abundance of caution and in accordance with State law, we submitted a public notification of the discharge to the State and posted signs at the potentially affected beach. Upon initial observations, staff did not detect olfactory or significant visual evidence of the sewage. However, samples from the area do indicate high levels of bacteria in various parts of the collection system and now the Lake. We are continuing to work through remediation options and additional sampling plans.  

IMPACT TO LAKE & RECREATION:   

We do not plan to remove the no-swimming signs until samples return to limits within the EPA standard. It is certainly best that users of the Lakefront, particularly at Oakledge, but per the State - within 1 mile north and south of Blanchard/Oakledge Beach - use some caution when recreating in the Lake until we have sample results. It is important to keep in mind that the further away from Oakledge one goes, the less risk there is.  

A REMINDER TO RESIDENTS:  

  • Please only use our sewer system to dispose of the 3 P’s: pee, poop & (toilet)paper. Grease should never be disposed of in drains or toilets. Flushable wipes – which are not actually flushable – can also lead to sewer back ups and should not be flushed.   

  • If you see something, say something! For urgent issues – including sewer backups - you should call 802-863-9094 24/7 and will get our customer service during business hours OR reach our after-hours answering service. Someone will be dispatched for issues affecting public health or safety. See Click Fix is GREAT, but is only monitored from 7:30AM-4:30PM Monday thru Friday, will not receive immediate responses and must not be used for suspected sewer, drinking water or chemical spill issues.  

 

Press Release Date: 
02/02/2024
City Department: 
Water Resources