Dover Wastewater Pump Station Remains Shuttered - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Dover Wastewater Pump Station Remains Shuttered

Posted: Feb 20, 2018 7:09 PM Updated:

DOVER, Del.- City of Dover Public Works crews on Tuesday removed faulty sewer pumps that failed the day prior, shuttering a pump station and prompting around-the-clock maintenance to contain the flow of sewage until repairs can be made.

Pump Station #7, located near the Home Depot along U.S. Route 13, is expected to be repaired over the next several days, according to Kay Sass, a spokeswoman for the city of Dover.

"We're continuing our cleanup efforts. We have all hands on deck," she said.

Crews removed the six pumps that failed on Monday to be cleaned and inspected. Bypass pumps had been brought in from Kent County and a firm in New Jersey to maintain the flow from sewage that regularly flows through the pump station.

The cost of repairing the pump station is expected to be at least $100,000, Sass said.

For some people who work and own businesses in the area, the pump station has typically be a nuisance because of an odor emanating from the building. The smell was associated with additional wastewater redirected from Kent County's sewer system to bypass the a faulty sewer main beneath U.S. Route 13.

Dover Public Works Director Sharon Duca said roughly 28 million gallons of wastewater flows through the pump station each month when the county's sewage is not re-directed. 

But that figure increases to roughly 60 million gallons of wastewater each month when the county does re-direct its flow to the pump station.

Sass said it wasn't clear on Tuesday what caused the pumps to fail and whether the additional wastewater from the county contributed to the shutdown.

Danielle Malone, an employee at an insurance company near the pump station, said before Monday the only problem with the pump station was the smell.

But on Monday, Malone said she spotted water seeping up from drains in the parking lot outside the building.

"It's sewage. It's not meant to be bubbling up from the ground for all of us to be breathing in and potentially walk through," she said.

George Issaris, owner of Shucker's Pier 13, said the business didn't open on Monday after a small amount of wastewater seeped up from drains in the kitchen and onto the floor.

A cleaning crew from ServPro was working on Tuesday and to get restaurant ready to open again, though Issaris said he's hoping the city can get the pump station operational again.

"Hopefully they get it under control," he said.

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