Sewage Continues to Flow into Beacon Harbor

Sample tray from 9 PM, 9/30 sample, 1/10 dilution. All wells fluorescing indicating result >24,196 Entero per 100 ml - more than 397 times the EPA guideline for acceptable water quality (61 Entero per 100/ml). Photo courtesy Riverkeeper

Water from this discharge pipe is “very contaminated”

A Water Quality Update from Riverkeeper 11:44am 10/03/2011:

Riverkeeper returned to the Beacon Harbor discharge on Friday evening 9/30/11 and found the flow from the pipe was stronger than when we sampled last on Friday September 23rd. The characteristic sewage smell and grey color were still evident. We sampled the water quality at 9 PM sharp, just before low tide when the sewage discharge was separate and distinct from river water. We were unable to resample earlier in the day because the tide was unusually high and up to the discharge pipe. The Enterococcus levels were again higher than our measurement limit using a 1 in 10 dilution, >24,196 Entero per 100 ml. That is greater than 397 times the EPA guideline for acceptable water quality for primary contact—61 Enterococcus per 100/ml. The water from this discharge pipe is very contaminated with sewage. As of 9/30, this discharge has been active since Friday the 17th (at least) when it was first reported to Riverkeeper—that’s 14 days. There was no signage or police tape at the site to warn the public against contacting the contaminated water.

3 Responses to Sewage Continues to Flow into Beacon Harbor
  1. Josh Lenaburg
    October 3, 2011 | 8:42 pm

    This is very distressing! Why aren’t our local representatives acting on this? Both Casale and Gold are in positions to act. We need a third candidate for mayor, for fair representation.

  2. Tom
    October 4, 2011 | 12:37 pm

    They are acting. As a profession who works in the engineering/mapping field, this is not a new problem. This system was designed this way in the late 1800′s and early 1900′s and is caused by storm water in the sewer system. NYC has spent BILLIONS to fix this problem over the last two decades and is still working on it. Beacon is also working on this but it is a long process to fix…and VERY expensive. Basically nearly the entire sewer and drainage system in the city has to be re-built. The city is doing this when they can but they simply don’t have the many many millions needed to redo the whole thing at once.

  3. Patti
    October 6, 2011 | 2:06 am

    Why beat around the bush? It is clearly sewage: looks like, smells like, tests like sewage. There’s no need for the city to wait on testing before being honest about it.

    Shouldn’t there (not that there is) be federal funding to help with such problems that threaten public health and the environment?

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