A Decatur Utilities sanitary sewer overflow from a manhole at 2004 Sherwood Drive S.E. discharged 34,250 gallons of sewage Sunday and Monday into a drainage ditch that feeds Flint Creek, according to documents filed by DU.

The overflow report, filed with the Alabama Department of Environmental Management, blamed the overflow on "a line blockage caused by roots and grease on a 10-inch PVC gravity sewer main."

The overflow continued for 23 hours before it was stopped, DU reported, and the discharge reached "designated swimming water."

DU crews cleared the blockage with a jet-cleaning truck, according to the filing.

"DU is currently investigating how the roots entered the main so that the issue can be addressed to prevent future reoccurrence," according to the report signed by Tom Cleveland, water resources manager for DU.

Decatur Utilities is a defendant in a lawsuit brought this year by the state Attorney General's Office and joined by the nonprofit Tennessee Riverkeeper relating to sewer overflows.

According to the nonprofit's compilation in September, DU had reported 50 sewage overflows in 2019 totaling more than 6.4 million gallons; and 245 violations since April 2014, totaling between 22.2 million and 24.7 million gallons of untreated sewage.

A 10,800-gallon overflow took place Oct. 30 as a result of a line blockage. The receiving creek for the overflow, which was from a manhole at 237 Ipsco St. N.W., was Bakers Creek.

The same creek received a 284,172 gallon discharge in early September after an overflow near 2520 Old Moulton Road S.W., according to a DU filing with ADEM.

eric@decaturdaily.com or 256-340-2435. Twitter @DD_Fleischauer.

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(1) comment

Larry Flack

Why don't we just blame 3M for this also.

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