CSO Tanks Preventing Overflow During Rain Spell

By Paige Browning

Rain and melting snow have poured into rivers and creeks, causing moderate flooding in some Inland Northwest waterways. On an even more local level, Spokane’s sewer tanks are being inundated with water, overflowing in many places.
 
At a Monday news conference at Underhill Park, city engineer Mike Taylor said untreated water is overflowing into the river at several locations. The city website shows 10 out of 25 overflowed Monday.
 
Taylor: “If you look at our website today it’s all lit up because we’re getting a lot of overflows, except for the stormwater tanks, like the one behind you, that we’ve constructed so far. They are not overflowing so it’s doing what it’s supposed to, keeping that untreated sewage out of the river.”
 
The so-called CSO tanks are being constructed one by one, and could cost as much as half-a-billion dollars, but according to Taylor they are working. The tanks collect wastewater and stormwater, until it can be treated and directed to the Spokane River. The city has plans to construct 11 CSO tanks by 2017.
 
Copyright 2014 Spokane Public Radio
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