Heavy Rains Contribute to Sewer Overflows

Dept. of Public Works press release header

This week’s heavy rains contributed to three sewer overflows, discharging 1.87 million gallons of stormwater mixed with sewer water. 

Most of the overflow volume stemmed from the severe rain that pounded parts of Baltimore City during the Tuesday, August 6, evening rush hour. As a result of these downpours, approximately 1.1 million gallons flowed from a structured sewer location at 428 E. Preston Street, and discharged into the Jones Falls. This rain event caused another 52,000 gallons, affecting the same stream, to flow from the structured overflow at 1901 Falls Road. 

On Wednesday, August 7, a location at 3900 Belair Road overflowed with a discharge of 742,000 gallons. This overflow reached the Herring Run.

Structured overflows were designed into the City’s sewer system more than 100 years ago to provide such releases when the sewers became inundated with rainwater.

In an update to an overflow previously reported, repairs have been made to abate the sewer overflow at 6300 Wirt Ave.  This was caused by a pipe break and discharged 45,580 gallons into the Western Run.

As a reminder, DPW’s interactive online sanitary sewer overflow map is now fully functioning. The map had been out of service due to the network outage caused by the ransomware attack. 

The public is advised to avoid direct contact with the receiving waters impacted by these or any other overflow.  Waterways throughout Baltimore City are considered impaired, and may not meet applicable standards for full-body contact recreation, including swimming, regardless of the impact of a specific sewer overflow.  Accordingly, the City discourages full-body contact with all surface waters. Click here for additional information regarding potential health impact, or call 410-396-4428.

For additional information pertaining to a specific overflow, please call the Baltimore City Department of Public Works at 410-545-6541.

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Jeffrey Raymond
Kurt Kocher
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.