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More than 1.3-million gallons of sewage discharged into Nolan Creek, City of Belton says

File Photo:  Nolan Creek in Belton, Texas
File Photo: Nolan Creek in Belton, Texas(KWTX)
Published: Nov. 17, 2021 at 1:37 PM CST
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BELTON, Texas (KWTX) - Work to repair a sewer force main near the Temple-Belton Wastewater Treatment Plant caused an unauthorized discharge of more 1.3-million gallons of sewage into Nolan Creek, the City of Belton said.

“The sewer spill into Nolan Creek west of the Temple-Belton Wastewater Treatment Plant has been stopped, allowing for the repair to be made to the force main,” said Paul Romer, a spokesperson with the City of Belton.

The Brazos River Authority, which manages the plant for the cities of Temple and Belton, on Wednesday morning notified the City of Belton about the leak, “which was discovered due to abnormally low sewage flows from the City into the treatment plant,” said Romer.

A work crew began assessing how to fix the leak and consulted with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ).

Romer said a sewage pump truck was deployed to temporarily stop the leak. “Following that measure, flow from the force main was diverted to an existing force main that allows a repair to be made without further impacting the flow of sewage into the plant,” the City spokesperson said.

Earlier in the day, Romer said the sewage discharge into Nolan Creek happened within private property, and the property owner had been notified. Regardless, “the public should avoid contact with creek water that is downstream from the treatment plant and should not ingest the water,” Romer said.

Those who come into contact with the water should bathe and thoroughly wash clothes as soon as possible. The City also advices fishermen to avoid any dead or dying fish. “If a fisherman in the area catches a fish that he or she intends to consume, make sure it is properly cleaned and thoroughly cooked,” Romer said.

The City does not yet know what caused the sewage leak.

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