MOYOCK, N.C. (WAVY) — A Virginia Beach-based utility company has been fined more than $62,000 after the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality’s Division of Water Resources said it failed to effectively manage the sewer collection system at the Eagle Creek subdivision in Moyock.
The community of about 400 homes dealt with sewage issues, including overflows, for more than two months, after issues were first reported this fall. One person’s home experienced 22 backups in 60 days, causing around $30,000 in damage, and service was interrupted for two weeks, DWR said.
Issues had also been reported in the past, mainly during weather events, DWR said in their permit violation assessment.
DWR said it had received complaints from homeowners since Sept. 29 about the recent issues, and learned the cause was due to sewage infrastructure owned by Sandler, including vacuum pumps and related components.
On Oct. 7, DWA issued a notice of violation to Sandler Utilities and a civil penalty of $60,000, which includes a $2,517.96 fee for investigative costs.
Sandler sent a response letter to DWR, saying they and operator Envirolink worked tirelessly since learning of the issue on Sept. 29 and have implemented new performance standards for maintaining the sewage system and reporting protocols.
DWR says Sandler has 30 days to respond with payment, an appeal, or adjustment of the penalty.
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