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Wastewater no-swimming advisory lifted Monday

A no swim advisory notice in Lincoln County caused by a wastewater spill was lifted as of Monday morning after press time.
The East Lincoln Sewer District had a spill at 4584 Lakeshore Road North, Denver Friday afternoon. An estimated 10,620 gallons of untreated wastewater spilled into Lake Norman in the Catawba River basin. The advisory affected all residents who live in the cove area that borders the Lakeshore home.
The incident occurred after a contractor was grading around the sewer box. It appeared that the box became damaged and resulted in a pipe bursting.
However, homeowners said they noticed “a raw sewage smell” a week before the accident, said Steve Gilbert, director of Public Utilities.
Gilbert is pleased that the cove has been re-opened for swimming.
“There was enough water movement in the cove to disperse it,” he said.
Three tests were done for fecal coliform levels and all came back with very low results, Gilbert said.
The three tests, two done on Saturday and one on Sunday morning all showed readings below 200 ml which meets the Division of Water quality standards.
“When something like this happens we have to figure it is the worst case scenario,” Gilbert said. “We counted that the leakage started with a gallon a minute to give us the number of gallons.”
He said the leakage might have happened at a lower rate.
According to Gilbert, factors such as the movement of the water, wave action and the wind are how the wastewater could have dispersed so quickly.
by Amy Wadsworth

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