Heavy rains overwhelm aging infrastructure in Florida

Overflowing Sewer

One of the most common issues related to aging and overburdened sanitary sewer infrastructure is broken, blocked, or overwhelmed combined sewer pipes causing systems to overflow during wet weather events. This can result in discharge of raw (untreated) sewage into local waterways.

During the recent heavy rainfalls in the Tampa Bay area, more than a dozen area utilities reported sewage spills. A partial list of spills reported to the state Department of Environmental Protection includes the cities of Mulberry, Palmetto, Bradenton, Tampa, Clearwater, St. Petersburg, Largo, Pinellas Park and New Port Richey, plus Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas and Hillsborough counties.

Such failures can cost taxpayers millions in cleanup, repair, and lost tourism dollars. Implementing an asset management plan can help ensure that you get the most value from each of your assets and have the financial resources to rehabilitate and replace them when necessary. Identifying and addressing assets that are likely to fail can avoid costly emergencies and protect public health in your community. Contact Four Waters Engineering if you have questions about how you can more effectively manage your infrastructure systems.

For More:

Four Waters Engineering: Aging Infrastructure

Recent rains expose a St. Pete wastewater system in disarray, Tampa Bay Times 

Sewage infiltrates floodwaters due to aging wastewater system, Tampa Tribune 

Flooding leads to sewage spills in the Bay Area, My Fox Tampa Bay 

Managing Aging Water Infrastructure Assets: Planning Ahead Saves Time and Money, National Environmental Services Center

Photo credit:  Iain Cuthbertson