Discharge Reported at Mattawoman Waste Water Treatment Plant

Officials say they believe there is no health risk or environmental damage as a result of this discharge

LA PLATA, Md. (May 14, 2008)—The Charles County Department of Utilities reported on Tuesday that as a result of torrential rains and multiple power outages on Sunday and Monday, May 11 and 12, the Mattawoman Waste Water Treatment Facility, located off MD Rt. 225, discharged un-disinfected treatment plant effluent through its discharge pipe to the Potomac River.

According to the Department, the discharge was fully treated except for the ultra-violet disinfection process, which is the final treatment step before normally discharging to the river.

The estimated volume of the discharge is approximately 6.6 million gallons. Officials noted that this discharge also contained significant amounts of rain water and flood waters from the Mattawoman Creek, which is adjacent to the treatment plant.

The Department stressed that no raw sewage was discharged to the river. Utilities staff say they believe there is no health risk or environmental damage as a result of this discharge.

The weekend rainfall was a significant event, with some areas of the Mattawoman service area receiving in excess of 8 inches of rain.

Officials say the Mattawoman Waste Water Treatment Plant continues to experience extremely high flows and the associated treatment difficulties. Additional rainfall is forecast for later in the week, which they fear may exacerbate existing conditions.

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