Overflow Stopped on Severed Sewer Main off Parkdale Avenue

Press Release

Crews working for the Baltimore City Department of Public Works (DPW) diverted this weekend what had been an ongoing sewage leak from an 8-inch line that was discovered inside a much larger storm drain in the Clipper Mill area. 

On September 28, 2017, an investigation by DPW discovered a severed (intentionally sawed) 8-inch sewer main inside of a 6-foot x 7-foot storm drain tunnel in the 3500 block of Parkdale Avenue. The cast iron sewer main, installed in 1917, runs for approximately 400 feet inside the storm drain which was constructed in 1935.

At one time the sewer main connected to another downstream sewer main as part of the sewer system, but it remains unclear how the 100 year old sewer line ended up being placed in the 82 year old storm drain. Why and when the sewer main was cut also is not known, but modern PVC connections are adjacent and probably date back to the early 2000s.

Over this weekend the sewage overflow into the storm drain, and ultimately into the Jones Falls, was stopped through bypass pumping. The next step will be a temporary re-connecting of the severed sewer line to a nearby manhole. This work will be done by a DPW on-call contractor within the next few weeks. A longer-range remedy will be the removal of the sewer line from inside the storm drain.

The estimated cost for this all of this work is being determined.

The public is reminded to avoid contact with urban waterways due to the risk of pollution. For information about health concerns as a result of sewer overflows please go to http://health.baltimorecity.gov/sanitary-sewer-overflows-sso.

Related Stories

DPW Celebrates Small Business Development Program Success

At the corner of South Paca and West Streets today, Baltimore City Department of Public Works Director Rudolph S. Chow, P.E., visited a worksite where a small business owner and graduate of DPW’s 2016 Small Business Development Program (SBDP) cleaned a City sewer line. Christopher Williams, Chief Executive Officer of Grace Management and Construction LLC, was one of the first in his small business development class to secure a subcontract on a DPW project.

Final Totals for Sewer Overflows from Historic July Rainfalls

Final reports are in for sewer/stormwater overflows that occurred during the last weeks of July.  These resulted from the heaviest rainfall in Baltimore in July on record.  Much of this overflow was released through structured outfalls, designed as part of Baltimore’s sewer system more than 100 years ago. The City will close the last of these structures once the new Headworks project is operational at Back River in late 2020.

DPW Reports Updated Sewer Overflow Totals

July has been a month of historically heavy rainfall in Baltimore, and more is in the forecast this week.  These rains have resulted in large amounts of rainwater entering the City’s sewer mains, causing overflows into streams and the harbor.  The updated overflow totals of stormwater mixed with sewer water due to rain stands at 45 million gallons for the period of Saturday, July 21, through Wednesday, July 25. 

Contact

Jeffrey Raymond
410-545-6541
[email protected]
Kurt Kocher
410-545-6541
[email protected]
Jennifer Combs
410-545-6541
[email protected]
After hours, weekends, or holidays please call 410-396-3100 for the duty officer

The Baltimore City Department of Public Works supports the health, environment, and economy of our City and region by cleaning our neighborhoods and waterways and providing its customers with safe drinking water and sustainable energy practices.