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LBJ Pump Overloaded, Sewage Pumped Into the Sea

November 15, 2004 – For the fifth time since August, Wayne D. Callwood, commissioner of the Department of Public Works, is advising Christiansted residents that the department's LBJ Pump Station has difficulties, is being bypassed and sewage is being pumped over Long Reef in Christiansted harbor.
This time the pump has suffered a hydraulic overload. Less than a week ago the pump had an electrical malfunction and the station had to be bypassed.
Usually when the station is bypassed an advisory has gone out to the media that the beaches in the area are unsafe for swimming. When the water is analyzed, high counts of bacteria are often found. However, no signs are placed on the beaches.
According to a press release from Dean Plaskett, commissioner of the Department of Planning and Natural Resources, Monday, "The house pump and back-up diesel pump are unable to draw down the water level in the station's wet well, due to the excessively high volume of storm-water from the recent heavy rains. DPW will continue to pump over Long Reef until the water level in the wet well subsides."
Callwood asked residents to avoid the impacted areas and to refrain from using the North Shore beaches in the vicinity of the LBJ Pump Station and the JFK Housing Community until further notice. DPNR will continue to monitor the impacted area.
Callwood said that the department's Anguilla Wastewater Treatment Plant was also impacted by the weekend weather. The increased flow into the system reportedly caused the channels to overflow Sunday night until 2 a.m. Monday morning.
Callwood added, "Continued rain full will add to the already over-saturated grounds and will continue to dump excessive water into our collection system, thus straining the pumps at the station."
"We anticipate ceasing to bypass by Tuesday," Callwood concluded.
For more information contact the Department of Public Works at 773-1290.
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