Lewes BPW Launches Investigation After Wastewater Plant Upsets - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Lewes BPW Launches Investigation After Wastewater Plant Upsets

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LEWES, Del.- After two equipment malfunctions in less than three weeks, the Lewes Board of Public Works has launched a formal investigation into the failure of the city's wastewater treatment plant.

In a press release, Lewes BPW says it will coordinate the investigation with the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control and city government.

“The BPW Board is deeply troubled by the recent failure at the American Legion Road facility,” BPW President D. Preston Lee says. “We are devoting our full efforts to assure that we identify the problem. This will include a thorough review and on-site inspections of all equipment, operational records and procedures, by our staff, the plant’s design engineers, the equipment manufacture’s technical support experts and White Marsh’s operational team. We will have White Marsh correct the failures and implement necessary measures to ensure this never happens again.”

White Marsh has operated and maintained the plants as an affiliate of Middlesex Water company since February 2017.

“We appreciate White Marsh abiding with the order from DNREC to perform enhanced monitoring of effluent, as a well as monitoring waters upstream and downstream of the discharge point in the Lewes-Rehoboth Canal along with their other corrective efforts to date,” says Lee. “We also look forward to their full cooperation in helping to determine the cause of the failure.”

In mid-December and early January, the facility was forced to bypass stages of treatment and discharge partially treated wastewater into the Lewes-Rehoboth Canal. The first bypass previously lasted for 10 days until new equipment was installed. Pressure behind that new equipment caused the second, two-hour malfunction, according to DNREC.

The Lewes Board of Public Works says it will release further details as the investigation progresses.

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