Twenty Thousand Gallons of Raw Sewage Spills Into Valdosta Creek

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-- Valdosta, Ga. -- February 22, 2013 --

Roughly 20,000 gallons of raw sewage spilled into Knights Creek in Lowndes County on Thursday.

One resident who lives near the creek said "it smelled awful." Another said "just a really bad smell like with a hard stench to it."

The creek is on the north side of Inner Perimeter Road near Chadwyck Drive. The spill has been contained. The city utilities director said the sewage did not contaminate the water supply but that doesn't mean it's not dangerous.

Valdosta Utilities Director Henry Hicks said "we know there will be some bacterialogic activity in there. You know, colliform bacteria from the sewer. So, you know, you dont want to get that in any wounds or anything like that."

It will take about seven days for the bacteria to cycle out of the creek. Meaning no fishing or playing near it. As for the cause of the spill: careless cooking. Hicks said "it wasn't a failed pump or anything like that. It was just people disposing of grease improperly down the drain."

The Valdosta Utilities Department says the best way to get rid of used grease is by pouring it into a can or a jar. When it's full you can throw it in the trash.

The city has been spreading lime around the spill to combat the stench.

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