News Release 178

Malfunctioning valve results in release of 2,000 gallons of drinking water treatment sludge in Bowling Green

Volume 38-178 (For Immediate Release)
Contact: Larry Archer

JEFFERSON CITY, MO., MARCH 30, 2010 – A malfunctioning valve at the drinking water treatment plant in Bowling Green Monday resulted in the release of an estimated 2,000 gallons of water treatment sludge into a Pike County creek, according to the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.

City officials notified the department Monday afternoon that a valve malfunction at the city’s water treatment plant allowed the overflow of drinking water treatment sludge into an unnamed tributary of Buckner Hollow. The sludge reached Buckner Hollow and eventually Noix Creek, affecting approximately 2.5 miles of the three waterways.

The release was discovered at 2:30 p.m. Monday and stopped shortly thereafter. It is not immediately known when the overflow began.

The department dispatched an investigator from its Northeast Regional Office in Macon to the site to assess any environmental effects of the release. Samples of the water were taken and will be tested for by-products of the drinking water treatment process.

Unlike wastewater sludge, which consists primarily of solids that have settled out or have been pressed out of sewage during the treatment process, the drinking water treatment sludge released in this case consisted primarily of the solids that settled or were filtered out of the lake water used by the city as its source for raw water and carbon from the treatment process.