The Gainesville Department of Water Resources reported two sewer overflows into tributaries of Lake Lanier, but they said it appears no harm was done to the areas where the wastewater was discovered.
The separate overflows were discovered Wednesday, Sept. 1 - one at a tributary of Limestone Creel and the other at a tributary to Balus Creek.
The spill at the Limestone Creek tributary was discovered on South Enota Drive around 11:20 a.m., according to a statement released by the city. Estimated discharge over the course of five days was placed at 50,000 gallons.
"A crew responded to find a wastewater discharge, via an overflowing manhole, entering a tributary of Limestone Creek. City staff were able to successfully remove the obstruction, the cause of the spill, by 11:50 a.m.," the statement said. "Further investigation determined a private sewer line, not yet dedicated to the City, was cleaned by a contractor last week. A plug had been placed in the line, but was washed into the City collection system, along with mud and other debris, causing the City’s line to become blocked."
DWR officials believe the spill could have started last week and the situation was likely made worse by heavy rains on Tuesday.
The spill at the Balus Creek tributary was discovered at 5:42 p.m. Wednesday when crews arrived at Mundy Mill subdivision to investigate a complaint from a resident about an overflowing manhole.
"A wastewater discharge was located near Birch Meadow Trail and found to be entering a tributary of Balus Creek. City staff were able to successfully remove the obstruction, caused by a grease buildup, by 8:30 p.m. DWR estimates about 2,340 gallons reached the tributary to Balus Creek," the statement said.
DWR officials said in both instances there were no signs of dead or stressed aquatic life.
Both spills were reported to the Georgia Environmental Protection Division as required by law. Informational signs have been posted in the locations of both spills.