Wastewater Spill: Gap Creek

Wastewater Spill: Gap Creek

On Wednesday, April 25, 2018, at approximately 10:15 p.m., 5,250 gallons of diluted wastewater from an abandoned City forcemain made its way to Gap Creek via an existing FDOT storm drain on Beal Parkway. While the existing forcemain was placed out of service and filled in 2013, an ancillary void in the line contained residual wastewater and groundwater. The existing forcemain was disturbed as a part of scheduled construction related to the ongoing FDOT resurfacing project on Beal Parkway. The spill was contained in approximately 15 minutes while controls were put in place.

-What does this mean?
When the pipe was “abandoned in place,” or placed out of service in 2013, the City hired a contractor who pumped out the wastewater and filled it with concrete to close it off. An ancillary void is basically an air pocket that can form in the pipe during the filling process and take in residual groundwater or wastewater.
If groundwater, in time, intrudes into the pipe, we classify it as wastewater to err on the side of caution, since it’s now inside a wastewater line and has come into contact with wastewater components.
The pipe was then broken during the ongoing FDOT project on Beal, resulting in the release of the residual collected inside, which is classified as a wastewater spill.
-As part of the notification process, the City informed the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, the Health Department, multiple media outlets, and posted to the City’s homepage at fwb.org. For more information, please contact our City Utilities office at (850)833-9613.