Sewage flows into Duzi river

2008-04-03 00:00

It has been discovered that raw sewage is flowing out of a municipal manhole next to the Hollingwood sewer pump station on Grimthorpe Avenue in Lincoln Meade.

A channel has been created directing the stream towards the Duzi River some 20 metres away. There is a strong sewage smell and many flies in the area. The pump station stands by idle, unable to pump the sewage to the Darvill sewage works.

Homes closest to the sewage spill are in a new housing development nearby. Residents were at work and could not be reached for comment.

Municipal strategic executive manager of infrastructure services and facilities, Philemon Mashoko, said the pumps from the Hollingwood station are being repaired.

The Msunduzi Municipality is also looking at buying new pumps. In the meantime, honeysuckers pump the sewage out of storage pumps every day. However, because three municipal honeysuckers broke down recently, there was a period when raw sewage was overflowing into the river. "The vehicles have been repaired and should be emptying the pumps again,"Mashoko said.

He denied that a channel has been deliberately dug to route the sewage spill into the river, claiming that it was created naturally by overflows from the manhole. The most recent sewage overflow into the river occurred on Tuesday.

Umgeni Water spokesman Shami Harichunder said Umgeni Water regularly monitors the water quality of rivers like the Umsunduzi on behalf of the Department of Water Affairs and Forestry (Dwaf) and the Msunduzi Municipality. "We report any pollution we find to both Dwaf and the municipality for them to act on. However, the source of the pollution spill is within the scope and responsibility of the municipality."

Mashoko added: "We are looking at redesigning this pump station to cope with overflows. This will ensure that any excess wastewater pumped into the river is safe, by, for example, treating it with chlorine."

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