The sewer spills triggered by last week’s heavy rains sent nearly 2 million gallons of sewage — and counting — into DeKalb County waterways.
With more rain already here and still more in the forecast, county officials say they’re attacking new spills and preparing for others. But they’re also asking residents to be diligent about reporting potential issues as quickly as possible.
Residents can report overflows and spills 24 hours a day by calling 770-270-6243. County officials say they have “a very aggressive monitoring and reporting system,” but every minute counts.
“With the ground already saturated from last week’s storms, we are preparing for the next wave of significant rainfall,” DeKalb County CEO Michael Thurmond said in a news release. “Stormwater intrusion into the sewer system is a major source of overflows and spills in our county.”
DeKalb County is under a federal consent decree to repair its aging and overwhelmed wastewater system and has dedicated more than $300 million to the cause in recent years.
There’s still plenty of work to be done, though, and heavy rains often bring major spills.
More than four inches of rain hit parts of DeKalb last Thursday, producing at least 19 reported sewer spills.
Specifics about several of them have not been released by Monday evening. But the total estimated spill volume from 12 spills for which updated reports were available was about 1.93 million gallons.
A single spill of over 10,000 is considered “major.” All but two of the 12 Thursday spills with updated reports were over 40,000 gallons.
Two spills had volumes of more than 350,000 gallons.
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