KANAWHA, Iowa – The Department of Natural Resources is investigating a huge wastewater discharge in Hancock County.
Staff at the Kanawha treatment plant say a lagoon recently failed, probably Sunday morning, and sent nearly seven million gallons of treated wastewater into West Otter Creek. Officials say the water had been through primary treatment and flowed into the creek after a pipe collapsed.
“The bottom line is, about 6.8 million gallons of water--that would have been legally discharged over the next few weeks—was discharged in the last 24 hours because the pipe broke,” says Trent Lambert, supervisor of the DNR Mason City field office.
Two DNR inspectors were taking water samples on Monday.
“Failure of the pipe should remind everyone to check the berms on lagoons and basins frequently, especially when we’ve had so much rain,” says Lambert.
The creek eventually flows into the Boone River about 10 miles northwest of Clarion.