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October 9, 2001

Contact: Geoff Ryan (718/595-6600)

26th Ward Wastewater Treatment Plant To Shut Down For Emergency Repairs

The New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) will be shutting down the 26th Ward Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) for emergency repairs on Thursday, October 11th, according to an announcement by DEP Commissioner Joel A. Miele Sr., P.E. The repairs will require a bypass of wastewater to Jamaica Bay for a period of up to 72 hours. The facility is located on Flatlands Avenue in Brooklyn.

On September 13th, a 54-inch force main in the plant, which delivers wastewater from the main pumping station within the plant to the treatment facilities, developed a severe leak. Two subsequent efforts at temporary repairs failed to resolve the problem, because the condition of the main was less stable than initial investigations revealed. Accordingly, DEP began implementation of a contingency plan that will not only resolve the immediate problem but will also ensure that such a condition does not occur again.

The main elements of emergency work involve several items. DEP will install a steel liner in the ruptured force main as well as a gate valve that will provide the ability to shut off one force main for repair or inspection while utilizing a second force main to continue the flow of wastewater to the treatment facilities within the plant. DEP will implement the permanent installation of two pumps that will divert wastewater from the wet well serving the ruptured main to another 54-inch force main, which will deliver wastewater to the plant's tresatment facilities. Additionally, as part of the operation, the wet well wall will be reinforced.

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has approved DEP's plans and concurs that the immediate repairs and associated plant shutdown and bypass are required and that no reasonable alternative is available to address this emergency. DEC has stated that to delay undertaking the repairs could result in total plant failure for a more extended period of time. Other agencies that have been involved in the decision-making process include the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the Interstate Environmental Commission, the New York State Department of Health and the New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation.

Normal flow to the plant equals about 60 million gallons a day, but not all of the flow will be bypassed to the bay. DEP expects to capture and treat about 2 to 3 million gallons a day during this period and will also capture for later treatment an additional 10 million gallons at the Spring Creek combined sewer overflow facility.

Notices of the wastewater bypass (below) have been posted at public access points and outfalls in the affected area.

Avoid Contact with these waters
The 26th Ward WPCP will be shut down for a 3 day period between October 10-16, 2001
These Waterways could be affected by the elevated level of coliforms due to sewage bypass


More Information

NYC Department of Environmental Protection
Public Affairs

59-17 Junction Boulevard
19th Floor
Flushing, NY 11373

(718) 595-6600