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Sewers Overflow Into Creeks Following Weekend Rain

San Antonio Water System
Residents should not flush so-called 'flushable' wipes; toss them in the trash. According to SAWS, they don't disintegrate in the system like toilet paper, and they clog the system resulting in costly, hazardous sewer spills.

We may have needed the recent rain, but it’s been causing problems with our sewage systems. There have been at least six sewer overspills into San Antonio waterways this year, and as TPR’s Louisa Jonas reports, two of them were just this week.

The weekend rain has caused two sewer overflows: one Sunday on Holbrook Road into Salado Creek and one on Monday inside Joint Base San Antonio - Lackland into Leon Creek. Anne Hayden is Communications Manager for San Antonio Water System, or SAWS. She says design work has begun on a new larger sewer line for Holbrook Road, which has had more overflows than Leon Creek. The replacement of the line may begin in early 2017. But she says it will take awhile to complete as it’s in a congested area.

"In fixing infrastructure problems like this capacity in a sewer line, unfortunately, is not something we can fix in a day, or a week, or a month. It’s something that takes a significant amount of time and money to be able to reroute and replace," she says. 

Hayden says replacing the Holbrook sewer line will probably cost more than 50 million dollars. She says the sewage in both creeks was heavily diluted by storm water, and that there was no adverse reaction to fish or other aquatic life.