Storm prompts release of partially treated wastewater into Hangtown Creek

The volume of sewage and storm water flowing into Placerville’s wastewater treatment plant led the city Thursday to begin pumping partially treated wastewater into Hangtown Creek.

The circumstances are similar to the event on Jan. 10 in which the amount of effluent entering the plant exceeded its capacity, according to a city news release. On Thursday, the plant’s emergency overflow basin also had exceeded its capacity,

“In order to maintain the integrity of the basin, the city has been in communication with the state Water Resources Control Board, and we have begun pumping partially treated wastewater into Hangtown Creek,” according to a statement issued by City Manager Cleve Morris.

He said neither the current releases nor those that occurred last month affect the water supply.

The water being discharged from the plant is primarily storm water but may contain some sewage, the city reported. Samples of water released into the creek are being taken and will be evaluated.

“We are currently monitoring and managing the problem internally,” the statement said. “If in the next couple of days the problem becomes more serious, we may need to declare an emergency in order to bring in outside assistance to manage the problem.”

Cathy Locke: 916-321-5287, @lockecathy

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