UPDATE 2012 11/01: WKYC visited our Southerly plant yesterday afternoon to feature the plant staff's efforts to manage the enormous volume of flow. Here's the story.
The Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District’s three wastewater treatment plants (“Easterly” and “Westerly” in Cleveland, “Southerly” in Cuyahoga Heights) are fully treating flows more than triple the average daily flow. In the last 24 hours, the three wastewater treatment plants fully treated 800 million gallons of wastewater. In addition, another 660 million gallons received primary treatment (solids removal) before being discharged into the environment.
The Sewer District’s 230 miles of interceptor sewers—large sewers that transport sewage to the plants—are transporting additional sewage for treatment. In addition, the Mill Creek Tunnel, capable of holding 75 million gallons of combined sewage, is filled to capacity. Lastly, locally-owned sanitary sewers contain flow as well. There is a tremendous amount of wastewater awaiting treatment.
Although a great deal of sewage is being treated or stored for future treatment, some flow is being discharged into the environment. Combined sewer overflows (CSOs) discharge a mixture of sanitary sewage and stormwater at 126 points throughout the Sewer District’s service area; many of these points have overflowed due to Hurricane Sandy (see photo and video below of CSO along Mill Creek).