Monday, February 19, 2018

Indiana sanitary district to pay $561,000 fine involving sewage discharges

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The Hammond Sanitary District in Indiana has agreed to pay a $561,000 fine and implement infrastructure enhancements as part of a settlement to resolve long-standing violations of the Clean Water Act involving discharges of untreated sewage into the Grand and Little Calumet rivers, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said in a recent news release.

The settlement, which involved the EPA, U.S. Justice Department and the Indiana Department of Environmental Management, will also protect Hammond residents from exposure to raw sewage caused by sewer backups, EPA said in the release.

“The Hammond Sanitary District has agreed to take actions over the next 18 years to manage sewer overflows and effectively treat stormwater and industrial wastewater during wet weather events,” the EPA said in the release. 

The Hammond Sanitary District has 10 sewer outfalls that discharge into the Grand and Little Calumet rivers, EPA said.

“When wastewater systems overflow, untreated sewage and other pollutants can be released to local waterways, threatening water quality and potentially contributing to beach closures and health concerns,” the EPA said in the release “Untreated sewage contains bacteria, viruses and parasites that can cause disease.”

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