Massive raw-sewage spill in Redwood Shores

Ruptured pipe leaks 48,000 gallons of raw sewage into Redwood Shores Lagoon

A ruptured underground pipe leaked about 48,000 gallons of raw sewage into the Redwood Shores Lagoon last week -- nearly 10 times the amount originally estimated, Redwood City officials said Monday evening.

The initial estimate of 5,000 gallons was based on preliminary information given to the San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board by first-responders who were sent to fix the broken pipe, located near Davit Lane and Anchor Circle, Redwood City spokesman Malcolm Smith said in a statement.

The leak was reported at about 3 p.m. on Wednesday. The city estimated that 300 gallons of sewage was flowing into the lagoon each minute, and that the flow could be halted in 20 to 30 minutes, Smith said.

However, further investigation at the site revealed that what was presumed to be a broken valve was actually a ruptured pipe, meaning a much higher flow and a longer repair time. The city is required to report a sewage spill and estimate the extent of it to the water quality control board within two hours.

In a report filed with the board by city staff earlier Monday, the revised spill amount was accompanied by test results from the lagoon water, which continues to show "high levels of coliform bacteria including E.coli." A warning to residents to avoid all forms of contact with the water -- including swimming, boating and kayaking -- will remain in place indefinitely.

"Redwood Shores residents will be informed as soon as it's determined the lagoon water has returned to normal condition," Smith said. A lagoon cleanup plan is being devised by city officials, the San Mateo County Environmental Health Department and the water control board, Smith said. Cleanup measures are expected to get under way this week. An estimate of cleanup costs and repairs has not been made.

— Bay City News Service

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Like this comment
Posted by BP
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 31, 2010 at 10:04 am

Is the tide pushing the sewage south to Palo Alto?

Like this comment
Posted by Anon.
a resident of Crescent Park
on Aug 31, 2010 at 11:14 am

As people take over more and more of nature this is always going to happen.

You'd think we could come up with a better way to handle all our waste products considering how much medicines, hormones, metals, etc end up in the environment and then in animals and plants.

We need to reduce the population of the Earth.

Like this comment
Posted by qq
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 31, 2010 at 4:24 pm

A quick look at google earth shows that this lagoon is connected to the Belmont Slough through a tide gate. I hope "they" will not let sewage flow out of the gate into the bay.

Web Link confirms the gate.

Web Link

[Portion removed by Palo Alto Online staff.]


Like this comment
Posted by qq
a resident of Barron Park
on Sep 1, 2010 at 1:08 pm

I noticed my "Save the planet, kill yourself." quote has been censored. It seems even more relevant now considering some guy is thinking about killing others over his wacko environmental beliefs.

Web Link

Some of his quotes:

"stop encouraging the birth of any more parasitic human infants."

"Civilization must be exposed for the filth it is,"

"Humans are the most destructive, filthy, pollutive creatures around and are wrecking what's left of the planet with their false morals and breeding culture,"

Be careful of anyone who starts talking about reducing human population without talking about their own personal exit strategy. ;-)


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