UPDATE: During our investigation into the sewer system, a major equipment issue was identified with the pump at one of our major lift stations at Tyrrell Park. Crews are working to get it back in service as soon as possible.
The heavy rain over the past few days brought an unusual weather event totaling around 4-5” of rain that inundated the City’s sewer system. There hasn’t been a storm that simultaneously affected so many areas of the City sewer system at the same time in quite a while.
The I and I (Inflow and Infiltration) system was overrun. What that means is there’s more water coming in than can go out, and the system stays overcapacity until the rain stops or slows significantly. Three of the major lift stations reached capacity, and citizens in the North End, Amelia, and West End were, unfortunately, the most affected.
During that time, crews were actively monitoring the water levels, and now that the water levels have receded, are working sun up to sun down to work through the calls and resolve them as quickly as possible. Team members are going to every residence that reported an issue to investigate and ensure it’s been sufficiently resolved. We understand the frustration and appreciate your patience as we work through the call log.
The City of Beaumont manages 750+ miles of sewer mains, 10,000+ man holes, and 43,000+ sewer taps. We’re out making repairs every day and working to better the system.
There is a lot of misinformation circulating surrounding EPA and TCEQ requirements. TCEQ is required to be notified within 24 hours every time there is an unauthorized discharge. That has been done, and there are no violations. We’re also nowhere near the levels that would designate public health concern -- rest assured, there is no need to worry.
On the contrary, the City participates in a joint SSOI (Sanitary Sewer Overflow Initiative) program with TCEQ to proactively improve the areas of I and I and are continually working to address potential issues before they occur. In the unfortunate event that an issue arises, we do a deep dive into what happened and look at what we can do to mitigate it better. As a result of this event, we’ll be enacting more city-wide preventative measures to identify lines that may have issues.
Again, thank you for your understanding and your patience as we work to provide the best service possible to our citizens. If you experience any sewer problems or any non-emergency city issues, always report it to 3-1-1.