House Bill 1160, which the North Carolina General Assembly enacted in July 1999, requires that municipalities, animal operations, industries, and others who operate waste handling systems issue a news release when untreated wastewater of 1,000 gallons or more enters surface waters.
In accordance with the regulation, the following news release has been prepared and issued to media in Lee County:
On February 6, 2020 at 5:30 p.m., the City of Sanford, located in Lee County, discovered discharges of untreated wastewater from several manholes that lasted for 14 hours. The overflow was caused by severe rain conditions.
The overflow locations were:
- Manhole 1887 at Market Street and Hickory Avenue;
- Manhole 1912 at Second Street and Sycamore Street; and
- Manhole 2274 at 305 E. Rose Street.
An estimated amount of 4,530 gallons of untreated wastewater were discharged during this time. The discharge entered an unnamed tributary feeding Big Buffalo Creek of the Cape Fear basin. These sites will be raked of debris and limed according guidance from the state of North Carolina.
The Division of Water Quality was notified of the event on February 7, 2020 and is reviewing the matter. For more information, contact the City of Sanford’s Public Works Service Center at 919-775-8247 or the Division of Water Quality’s Raleigh regional office at 919-733-7015.
Frequently Asked Questions
Question: Is Sanford’s water supply contaminated as a result of the spill?
Answer: No, it is not. The City of Sanford’s water treatment facility is well equipped to provide clean water. The wastewater overflow caused the severe rain conditions has not affected the facility’s ability to provide safe drinking water for our residents. If you have concerns about your drinking water at any time, you can contact the facility operators at 919-777-1801.
Question: How will residents know if the City of Sanford is concerned about the safety of its water?
Answer: If the City is ever concerned about the safety of its water, staff will use every available outlet available to alert the public. Sign up to receive immediate text or email alerts here.