Currituck: Wastewater spill not a public health hazard

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CURRITUCK COUNTY, N.C. (WAVY) — Officials in Currituck say a recent untreated wastewater leak in Corolla poses no major health risk to the public. 

According to an email from the county government, the leak was discovered on Friday at the Ocean Sands Waste Water Treatment Plant at 743 Ocean Trail. 

Officials say more than 1,000 gallons of untreated wastewater was found at the plant around 11 a.m. The wastewater went from the tank into a groundwater-lowering moat at the plant, which officials say was sealed off by noon Friday. 

Officials say when the wastewater plant became overwhelmed due to recent storms and localized flooding, a rusted pipe connection in an older section of the plant began leaking. 

In the meantime, county staff have dug another basin to catch any spillage and put an emergency pump in place to reroute wastewater back into the plant if needed. Officials say the emergency pump will be in place until wastewater levels return to normal levels. Then a permanent replacement will be installed. 

“The county will continue to monitor the Ocean Sands Waste Water Treatment Plant and work with the Division of Water Resources to prevent any public health risks,” the email read.

No waste reached public areas or local stormwater retention systems, according to officials. However, they say certain properties in Corolla had wastewater backflow “through illegal, previously unknown connection that citizen made to the county’s waste water infrastructure.” 

Currituck officials say those spots are being cleaned and the illegal connections will addressed in the future. 

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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