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Natural Resources and Parks

King County, Washington

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Dec. 12, 2010

King County wastewater facilities resuming normal operation after storm

Clean up and repairs still under way as ‘Pineapple Express’ subsides

King County's wastewater treatment system is again resuming normal operation after a severe storm brought heavy rains and high flows that overwhelmed portions of the regional sewer system.

Early this afternoon, utility crews successfully stopped a sewage overflow that began around 1 a.m. Sunday at the Medina Pump Station in Medina. Heavy rains and a computer system malfunction contributed to conditions that caused the overflow into Lake Washington. Crews engaged a back-up system that will enable the pumps to operate manually until computer issues can be resolved. The volume of the overflow is unknown at this time.

Clean up began in Seattle’s Meadowbrook Park around 3:30 p.m. following a wastewater overflow that occurred there early this morning. High volumes of stormwater and wastewater in a sewer line blew open a concrete block over a sediment trap, causing wastewater to spill into the park.

A vactor truck was sent to remove debris from the grounds. To protect public health, the park has been closed until tomorrow morning.

Throughout the day, crews worked to stop overflows into Lake Washington from the Matthews Beach and North Mercer Island pump stations. Staff also responded to reports of overflows into Puget Sound from the Carkeek, Hidden Lake and Richmond Beach pump stations, as well as an overflow in the Cedar River from the Cascade Siphon in Renton.

King County has notified health and regulatory agencies about the overflows, taken water quality samples, and posted affected public areas as closed.


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