Excessive Rainfall Causes Sanitary Sewer Overflows

Drinking Water System Not Affected

| News Release



Laurel – May 1, 2014: Excessive rainfall has caused five Sanitary Sewer Overflows (SSOs) at separate WSSC facilities; all SSO events have been resolved. It is important to note that WSSC’s drinking water system is separate from the wastewater system and is NOT affected by the overflows.

  • The Broad Creek Wastewater Pumping Station (WWPS) at 10315 Livingston Road, Fort Washington, began overflowing highly diluted wastewater at approximately 5:45 p.m. on April 30 and ended at 12:16 a.m. High flows as a result of the excessive rainfall are the cause of the overflow. 
  • The Fort Washington Forest #1 WWPS at 12800 Monroe Avenue, Fort Washington, began overflowing at approximately 5:56 p.m. and ended at 11:22 p.m. on April 30. The total estimated flow is 19,000 gallons. The start time was adjusted after careful analysis and review of inspector reports. 
  • The Western Branch WWPS at 6600 Crain Highway, Upper Marlboro, began overflowing at 10:15 p.m. and ended at 11:20 p.m. on April 30. Total estimated flow is 2 million gallons. The overflow was due to mechanical pump failure. WSSC staff adjusted the pumps to operate them manually which ended the SSO event. 
  • The Reddy Branch WWPS at 2611 Brighton Dam Road, Brookeville began overflowing at 8:15 p.m. and ended at 9:07 p.m. on April 30. The total estimated flow is 5,200 gallons. The overflow was due to a nearby stream overflowing its bank and submerging sewer manholes, which overwhelmed the pumps. 
  • The Western Branch WWPS at 6600 Crain Highway, Upper Marlboro, began overflowing at 3 a.m. and ended at 7:15 a.m. today. The total estimated flow is 3 million gallons. The overflow was due to pump failure from the excessive rain.

Notifications haven been made to the Maryland Department of the Environment and both the Prince George’s and Montgomery County Health Departments. WSSC crews have posted signs in the affected areas and perform all necessary cleanups when the overflows end. The Commission will also perform a complete analysis on the overflows to include additional detailed information.

WSSC is committed to protecting the health of the public and the environment. With nearly 5,400 miles of sewer mains throughout its service area, WSSC appreciates notification from citizens if a sewer back up is suspected. Citizens can call 301-206-4002 or toll free 1-800-828-6439 at any time to report water or sewer emergencies in Prince George's or Montgomery counties.

For 100 years, WSSC has proudly served the citizens of Prince George’s and Montgomery counties – providing drinking water that has always met strict Safe Drinking Water Act standards and protecting the environment through vital water resource recovery services. Our vision is to be THE world-class water utility, where excellent products and services are always on tap.


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