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Tuesday, October 4, 2022
HomeNewsArchivesWMA Again Forced to Pump Sewage Over Long Reef

WMA Again Forced to Pump Sewage Over Long Reef

After a force sewer main burst near Christiansted Saturday, the V.I. Waste Management Authority began pumping sewage over Long Reef, according to WMA.
The wastewater flow was diverted to the sea over the reef to reduce the impact to the adjacent neighborhood and prevent sewer overflows in Christiansted town and surrounding areas. Work on repairing and replacing a section of the main is expected to continue for another five days, according to a statement from the WMA.
Meanwhile, residents are being urged to avoid affected areas of St. Croix’s north shore near Long Reef, especially if they have weakened immune systems.
That section of the St. Croix sewage system has been plagued with spills, breaches and pump station failures necessitating periodic pumping of sewage over Long Reef once or twice a year for many years.
Over the last two years, WMA has shifted from a strategy of patching breaks as they occur to one of replacing 100- to 150-foot sections of old cast iron pipe with new PVC pipe whenever a new break occurs.
In January, Fig Tree pump station (on the island’s South Shore) failed, forcing WMA to bypass the station and let a portion of St. Croix sewage flow into the ocean at Long Reef and Cane Garden Bay. Those sewage bypass incidents brought on court action by the Environmental Protection Agency and the pumps were quickly repaired.
This new bypassing of sewage into the sea is from a failed force main—a burst pipe—not a pump and is not directly connected to the aforementioned earlier incidents.

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