Blockage sends sewage spilling down Lake Tahoe street |

Blockage sends sewage spilling down Lake Tahoe street

A blockage in a private line sent sewage spilling down Kokanee Trail Friday morning.

South Tahoe Public Utility District received a call reporting a leak and quickly confirmed a blockage in the private lateral at 3093 Kokanee Trail. According to the district, sewage was spilling into the street gutter and flowing into a storm drain on Pioneer Trail.

A vactor truck was brought in to vacuum up the overflow to prevent additional sewage from entering the storm drain, according to STPUD. A crew stopped the spill and cleaned the area.

"Our community's support to invest in clean-up equipment allowed our crew to quickly respond and minimize the environmental damage caused by spill," Chris Stanley, STPUD manager of field operations, said in a press release.

The blockage occurred in private lateral, a sewer pipe that connects a home to the sewer main in the street.

"Blocked sewer laterals and spills are usually caused by tree roots growing into the pipe, pouring fats, oils and grease down the drain, and/or flushing anything other than human waste and toilet paper," Stanley said.

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Homeowners are encouraged to do routine preventative maintenance to avoid costly sewer spills, according to the district.