61,000 gallons of wastewater sludge leaks from line near FM 969, Austin Water performing repairs


AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin Water responded to a sanitary sewer overflow in far east Austin Wednesday night.

The utility said it happened near the corner of FM 969 and Blue Bluff Road. That’s just past John Trevino Jr. Metro Park.

It said the overflow, which was found Tuesday, is coming from a 12-inch wastewater sludge line. Due to the leak, 61,000 gallons of wastewater sludge flowed into a storm drain that goes to Elm Creek.

The overflow was stopped at 5:15 p.m. Wednesday. Repairs, recovery, hauling and cleanup operations are underway.

Austin Water said the overflow doesn’t affect the drinking water supply. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality was notified.

Although the amount of sludge released doesn’t exceed the 100,000-gallon threshold, Austin Water is urging the following:

  • Persons using private drinking water supply wells located within 1/2-mile of the overflow site or within the potentially affected area should use only water that has been distilled or boiled at a rolling boil for at least one minute for all personal uses including drinking, cooking, bathing and tooth brushing.
  • Individuals with private water wells should have their well water tested and disinfected, if necessary, prior to discontinuing distillation or boiling.
  • Persons who purchase water from another public water supply may contact their water supply distributor to determine if the water is safe for personal use.
  • The public should avoid contact with waste material, soil, or water in the area potentially affected by the overflow.
  • If the public comes into contact with waste material, soil, or water potentially affected by the spill, they should bathe and wash clothes thoroughly as soon as possible‎.

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