Sewage Spill Unionville Road Easton


Category: Public Works

On Monday, September 27, 2021 at approximately 10:00 a.m. the Talbot County Sanitary District received a telephone call from a resident regarding an alleged discharge of wastewater in the vicinity of a sanitary sewer manhole located near 8980 Unionville Road in Easton. The manhole, which is part of the County’s sanitary sewer collection system, transports untreated wastewater from properties located in Unionville, Tunis Mills, and Copperville to the wastewater treatment plant located in St. Michaels.

Staff from the Sanitary District immediately responded to the complaint and upon investigation determined that approximately 21,000 gallons of untreated wastewater was discharged from the sewer manhole into a road side ditch and adjoining drainage way due to a malfunction in an Air Release Valve assembly located within the manhole. Staff immediately stopped the discharge of wastewater from the Unionville pump station through the collection system so that corrective action could begin. A vacuum pumper was called to the site of the discharge to begin the removal of the wastewater from the drainage ditch and adjoining drainage way. Lime was spread over all the affected areas.

The sewage discharge was reported to the Maryland Department of the Environment and to the Talbot County Health Department’s Office of Environmental Health. An Environmental Health representative visited the site and confirmed the discharge of sewage from the manhole to the roadside drainage ditch. Wastewater was also observed crossing under Unionville Road through a culvert pipe that was connected to adjoining drainage way. It was determined that the untreated sewage would need to travel approximately 1,800 linear feet from the manhole through the grass lined drainage ditch and adjoining drainage way in order to reach the navigable waters of the State. Based on the distance to navigable waters as well as the ability of the grasses and soils located within the drainage ditch and drainage way to filter and attenuate the wastewater, the Office of Environmental Health determined that there was low to minimal impact to public health and the environment.

If the public has any questions regarding the public health determination they may contact Anne Morse, Director of Environmental Health at 410-770-6880 Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. or after hours by contacting the Talbot County Operations Center at 410-822-0095. The Operations Center will contact the Environmental Health Specialist on call.

If the public has questions regarding the discharge or the corrective action taken they may contact Terry Martin, Environmental Engineer with the Talbot County Department of Public Works, at 410-770-8170.


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