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Millions of gallons of sewage water spill into Brazos River

The City of Waco said substantial rainfall and a mechanical failure caused 4.5 million gallons of wastewater to spill into the Brazos River.

WACO, Texas — 4.5 million gallons of wastewater spilled into the Brazos River Friday due to the substantial rain and a mechanical failure at the treatment plant, a press release from the City of Waco said.

It happened at the Waco Metropolitan Regional Sanitary Sewerage System Central Treatment Plant.

The city said a total of 5.5 million gallons was discharged with 4.5 million gallons spilling into the river. The discharge has been stopped.

The city said they had notified the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and begun the cleanup process.

The city said the wastewater system is separate from the drinking water system and they had no reason to believe the drinking water was compromised.

The city offered four measures citizens could take as a precaution.

  • Persons using private drinking water supply wells located within ½ mile of the spill site or within the potentially affected area should use only water that has been distilled or boiled at a rolling boil for at least one minute for all personal uses including drinking, cooking, bathing, and tooth brushing. Individuals with private water wells should have their well water tested and disinfected, if necessary, prior to discontinuing distillation or boiling.
  • Persons who purchase water from a public water supply may contact their water supply distributor to determine if the water is safe for personal use.
  • The public should avoid contact with waste material, soil, or water in the area potentially affected by the spill.
  • If the public comes into contact with waste material, soil, or water potentially affected by the spill, they should bathe and wash clothes thoroughly as soon as possible.

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