Ten gallons of sewage hit the lake | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Ten gallons of sewage hit the lake

by Andy Bourelle

A small amount of sewage reportedly reached Lake Tahoe last week after contractors drilling at Lakeside Cove Resort ruptured an underground line.

Bruce VanCleemput, assistant fire chief of the Tahoe Douglas Fire Protection District, said approximately 50 gallons of sewage erupted from the ground. Because of digging dikes to divert the spill and throwing down tarps at the shore, probably only 10 gallons reached the water, he estimated.

The Nevada-hired crews were completing work to help plan a replacement of the retaining wall there on U.S. Highway 50.

The accident happened about 5:30 p.m. May 20.

Janet Murphy, general manger of Tahoe-Douglas Sewer District, could not be reached Friday for details.

Joe Livak, enforcement branch supervisor of the bureau of water pollution of the Nevada Department of Environmental Protection, said Friday he had not yet been notified of the spill.

“If it reached the lake, we will probably issue a finding of violation then try to determine if it was a mistake or error, improper procedure or negligence. If that’s the case, we will seek a penalty. If it was a total accident nobody could foresee, then we won’t seek a penalty,” he said. “We try to sort it out on the basis of if we can find fault or what kind of impact it made.”

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