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Three more Valdosta wastewater overflows 2016-03-28

7664100194 87543844c7 m In: Three more Valdosta wastewater overflows 2016-03-28 | Our Santa Fe River, Inc. (OSFR) | Protecting the Santa Fe River

WWALS Coalition has posted the following article about more sewage going into the Suwannee River.

John Quaterman writes:  “And of course both the Withlacoochee and the Alapaha join the Suwannee River.  Valdosta says there’s no significant vestige of its wastewater that far downstream.”

We all know that people in authority like to believe that the answer to pollution is to dilute it.  Easy answer, cheap, costs  little,  and sometimes the problem goes away by itself.   Others know better, that poison by small increments still ends up with poison.  How dead do you want to be?

Everyone has been very patient with Valdosta.  Water authorities from there have traveled to Live Oak to meet with the SRWMD managers, and also the Florida
DEP managers.  Agreements reached, hands shaken.

It is now time for Valdosta to stop putting raw human sewage into Florida’s rivers.  Scroll

On March 30, 2016 at 10:01AM, jsq at WWALS Watershed Coalition published the following article:

Who thought it was a good idea for stormwater to go into Valdosta’s sanitary sewer system?


700 Cypress Street, Valdosta, GA

Whoever it was, the current Valdosta Utilities, Engineering, and especially Stormwater Director have to deal with it, frequently.

Maybe some of the upwards of $300 million Valdosta is spending on force main, new Withlacoochee Wastewater Treatment Plant, etc., will help with this problem.

But none of that will stop rain from falling on Valdosta,


CONSERVE WATER – Turn off the tap as much as possible in every activity such as bathing, cleaning, irrigating, and washing. Click here for more ideas.

and little of it is directed at the Alapaha River watershed in Valdosta,

where one of this week’s three spills went.

Come see for yourself where Sugar Creek flows into the Withlacoochee River,

this Sunday morning, April 3rd,

on the extra WWALS Outing

from Langdale Park to the Little River Boat Ramp.

And come paddle with us on the Alapaha River Saturday morning April 23rd,

from Hotchkiss Road in Lanier County to Mayday in Echols County,

upstream from where Knights Creek flows into Mud Swamp Creek, which joins Grand Bay Creek to form the Alapahoochee River, which joins the Alapaha River in Florida.

And of course both the Withlacoochee and the Alapaha join the Suwannee River.

Valdosta says there’s no significant vestige of its wastewater that far downstream.

It would be good to have some independent water quality monitoring to be sure.

I notice


Section 5 Mud Swamp Creek Basin

of Valdosta’s


Master Stormwater Management Plan


This evaluation currently focuses only on the Dukes Bay Canal.

Evaluation of the primary stormwater management system in the

Knight’s Creek basin will be performed at a later stage.

While there’s a

Section 4: Withlacoochee Basin

with subsections for each of the creeks or branches,

there’s no similar section for the Alapaha or Alapahoochee Basin,

and no section or subsection for Knights Creek.

Yet according to


Section 1 Data Review and Discussion, 1.1 Introduction and Background,

Table 1.1.1, Knights Creek drains about four times as much area (10,485.8 acres)

as Dukes Bay Canal (2,700.5), and is twice as long (10.2 stream miles to 5.0).

What’s your plan for Knights Creek, Valdosta?

And when will we get some answers to


our questions from a year ago, which include

“How many other such wastewater overflows into Knights Creek have there been?”

The VDT is beginning to count.

Jennifer Dandron, Valdosta Daily Times, 28 March 2016,


City responds to sewer overflows,

The weekend incident is the 17th sewer spill since January.

Sementha Mathews,

Valdosta PR (and WCTV and WTXL), 28 March 2016,


Weekend Storm Causes Three Sanitary Sewer Overflows,

On March 27, 2016, during routine inspections of the sewer system

and following heavy holiday weekend rainfall that produced four

inches of precipitation, the Utilities Department staff identified

sanitary sewer spills at three locations in the city. The spills

resulted from stormwater infiltration and inflow (I&I) into the

sanitary sewer system, causing it to exceed the capacity of the

city’s sewer collection system. The storm drains and the discharge

points into the streams were immediately cleaned and disinfected.

The combined stormwater and sewer flows resulted in manhole

overflows at the following locations:

  • An overflow in the 700 block of Cypress Street spilled an estimated14,725 gallons into Knights Creek.
  • An overflow in the 1800 block of Remer Lane spilled an estimated84,300 gallons into Sugar Creek.
  • An overflow in the 600 block of Scott Drive spilled an estimated2,885 gallons into Sugar Creek.

All appropriate regulatory and public health agencies have been

notified, and warning signs have been posted at the spill locations

as well as downstream to advise the public to avoid any contact with

these waterways for the next seven days. Staff immediately began

monitoring and testing the impacted area.

The city continues its ongoing effort to improve the infrastructure

of the sewer system to eliminate these issues in the future. Two

major projects—the Force Main Project and the relocation of

the Withlacoochee Wastewater Treatment Plant—to eliminate

sewer overflows are rapidly approaching completion and are expected

to be operational by May 2016. Improving the sanitary sewer system

continues to be the city’s main priority.

For more information, contact the Utilities Department Environmental

Manager Scott Fowler at 229-259-3592 or


You can join this fun and work by becoming a WWALS member today!

700 Cypress Street, Valdosta, GA

Read this article at WWALS Watershed Coalition at

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  1. Why hasn’t the EPA cited them? The CWA of 1972 specifically states that point sources of municipalities must comply. They should be fined until they comply. Each violation merits a citation. Fines collected should go towards spill affected habitat restoration/reclamation. Outrageous.

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