DPW Reports Updated Sewer Overflow Totals
Monday Jul 30th, 2018
Historic rainfall overwhelms sewer system
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. Much of this was released through structured overflows, designed as part of Baltimore’s sewer system more than 100 years ago. The city is in the process of eliminating these.
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. Data for subsequent dates will be provided when available.
Two ongoing locations, for which totals are not in, are Maidens Choice (behind the 300 block of S. Beechfield Road) and at the Gwynns Falls near Edmondson Avenue and Hilton Parkway. These locations experienced structural damage during the storms. DPW is working with a contractor to resolve the issue at Beechfield and will install bypass pumping at the Gwynns Falls location, as the stream subsides, and begin restorative work.
The Baltimore City Health Department and the Maryland Department of the Environment were notified of the sewage releases. 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.
As a reminder, citizens who experience basement sewage backups as a result of rain events are encouraged to take advantage of the city’s Expedited Reimbursement Program (ERP). This program is to reimburse residents and property owners for cleanup costs related to sewage backups caused by wet weather. Application and eligibility information can be found at this link: https://publicworks.baltimorecity.gov/sewer-consent-decree/building-backups. Please note that this program is NOT designed for costs related to flood damage, hurricanes, or other extreme weather events.