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Sudden Valley, March 2002

Something leaked.

New photos.

Sudden Valley, December 2001

It rained.

Rain is supposed to run in creeks and culverts, and sometimes in it's own storm sewer pipelines. Sanitary sewerage has a separate network of pipelines, to keep the hazardous content of the sewerage water away from people and send it only to the sewerage treatment plant. But as anyone who has lived here for any length of time and paid attention knows, in Sudden Valley and Water District 10, they do things differently. Now don't take us wrong, we can approve and even applaud doing something differently when the method accomplishes the agreed goals and especially if it economizes the community's scarce resources. But no, WD10 simply seems to ignore that community goal.

Somebody, years ago, built a sanitary sewerage system that also catches lots of rainwater. This has been known since "the beginning". When there is inflow to the system (from non-sanitary sewerage sources) that's "I". And, when there is infiltration into the system (from non-sanitary sewerage sources) that's "I". Together, they are known as "I&I" or "I/I" -- "inflow and infiltration".

WD10 knows that, but they chose to implement....

a Dec 14th Sewerage Release

and a Dec 16th Second Sewerage Release

and yet again a Dec 17th THIRD! Release

On December 14th, 15th, 16th and 17th, 2001 there were people who did not know what this water was, walking through RAW SEWERAGE running across areas accessible to the public and into the Lake.

Who put it there?

Water District 10, that's who!

More: The Water District made a management decision to release raw sewerage onto the public areas of Sudden Valley, and into Lake Whatcom!

not just ONCE!  or  TWICE!  but  THREE-TIMES!
in four days.

See the sewerage discharges; the "stinking-gun"!

See the sewerage actually flow - with a
5-second video (478KB; video player needed)

Is this hazardous to public health?
Is it illegal?
Shouldn't it be prohibited, by common sense even if not by law?

The State thinks so:....
A pretty picture, a nice place for kids to splash around as they wander through...

.... until you know about the water....
kids in sewerage on the golf course
....flowing unannounced across the Golf-cart path....
untreated raw sewerage on the golf course
....that was coming from here......
Valve open releasing untreated raw sewerage.
On Tuesday, December 18, 2001,
Washington State Department of Ecology
issues an Administrative Order to WD-10:
"Comply immediately!"

The order: "....describes actions which must be taken immediately by WD10 to halt all sewage and wastewater overflows....[and]...submit to the DoE a revised plan for special operating procedures to eliminate any and all sewage and wastewater overflows...."

But, can it be done?

Well, other communities have addressed I&I very well.
Look at this plain-language webpage about how stormwater gets into the sanitary sewer system, and what one community has done about it:

Click to see MMSD program
( Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District )
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edited  2001.12.26:18   -- mgb --

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