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Thursday, October 23, 2014
20 Million Gallons of Sewage Spill on Sand Island
By Selected News Articles @ 5:31 PM :: 5226 Views :: Honolulu County, Environment

City could have worked harder to prevent Sand Island sewage spill

KHON: ...The city continues to clean up after Sunday’s massive wastewater spill at Sand Island.

The spill, which occurred at around 11 a.m. at the Sand Island Wastewater Treatment Plant, was triggered by a short circuit caused by a surge of wastewater during heavy rains.

While 5,000 gallons of partially treated wastewater spilled into Honolulu Harbor, the plant’s interior suffered much worse.

Honolulu’s mayor said crews have cleaned up all 20 million gallons of sewage that spilled inside the plant, and much of the plant’s power should be restored by Wednesday.

But could the city have done something to prevent it?

The mayor said it was a combination of the large tanks called clarifiers being fixed, which led to one of only two channels where sewage flows being usable when the storm hit.

As far as the cost, the mayor said the city is insured with a $75,000 deductible, so that’s likely what it will cost city taxpayers for the damage to the plant....

KITV: 20 million gallons of sewage overflows at Sand Island Waste Water Treatment Plant

read ... City could have worked harder to prevent Sand Island sewage spill

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Power being restored at Sand Island WWTP

News Release from City and County of Honolulu October 23, 2014

Honolulu The city’s Sand Island Wastewater Treatment Plant (SIWWTP), which had a 20 million gallon in-plant overflow on Sunday short-circuiting the plant’s electric boxes, is slowly restoring power to vital components at the facility.

Synagro, the In-Vessel Bioconversion Facility that takes the plant’s sludge and turns it into soil amendment pellets, went back on the Hawaiian Electric grid last night at 6 p.m.

Crews also installed new motors to the plant’s two largest primary clarifiers 7 & 8.  Rotating arms are now functioning and solids can be moved out of those tanks to the gravity thickeners for processing.

SIWWTP should receive power to a third clarifier by Friday, while a backup clarifier is to be powered shortly thereafter.

-END-

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Crews continue to repair Sand Island Wastewater Treatment Plant

News Release from City and County of Honolulu October 23, 2014

Sand Island – Crews were hard at work again today restoring power to vital parts of the Sand Island Wastewater Treatment Plant after heavy rains caused by Hurricane Ana led to flooding within the plant, short circuiting some of the plant’s electrical systems on Sunday.

Today, the egg-shaped digester operated by Synagro Technologies was restored to full service and resumed converting the plant’s sludge into soil amendment pellets.  Crews were able to reconnect the In-Vessel Bioconversion Facility to the power grid at about 6 p.m. Tuesday night.

“We’re pleased Synagro was able to restore power so that we can process sludge and avoid taking it to the landfill,” said Mayor Kirk Caldwell. “If the system had been offline too long, the microbiotic organisms in the digester could have stopped functioning, leading to additional problems. Thankfully that did not happen, thanks to the quick work of Synagro.”

Crews also fixed the plant’s two largest primary clarifiers, numbers 7 and 8.  Rotating arms on those clarifiers are now functioning and solids can now be moved out of those tanks to the gravity thickeners for processing.

Crews continue to work on restoring clarifiers 4 and 6.  The plant needs at least three clarifiers online at any given time to process all of the incoming wastewater, so crews still need to restore one of these two remaining clarifiers to fully restore the plant.

“We expect to get a third clarifier back online by Friday, and the backup clarifier by next week,” said Director of Environmental Services Lori Kahikina.

The remaining clarifiers at the plant are currently offline for a routine maintenance project.  Today, contractor Parsons plugged up several holes in an offline spillway to prevent a reoccurrence of wastewater overflowing into the basement area that contains electrical paneling.

On Sunday, a spike in runoff water into the sewer system during a heavy rains caused by Hurricane Ana caused an overflow within the Sand Island Wastewater Treatment Plant.   5,000 gallons of partially treated waste water overflowed into Honolulu Harbor.  At the same time, some 20 million gallons were thankfully contained in the basement area, damaging the electrical wiring but preventing a larger overflow into the harbor.

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Crews restore critical infrastructure at Sand Island Wastewater Treatment Plant following Hurricane Ana flooding damage

News Release from City and County of Honolulu   October 28, 2014

Sand Island – City crews and contract workers have successfully restored critical parts of Sand Island Wastewater Treatment Plant to pre-Hurricane Ana levels of operation.  As of yesterday, the four clarifier settling tanks which were online prior to the hurricane are back in working order.

Beginning Sunday morning, October 19, 2014, heavy rains caused by Hurricane Ana and ongoing construction led to flooding within the plant, short circuiting some of the plant’s electrical systems and knocking clarifiers 4, 6, 7, and 8 offline. 

Crews brought clarifier 6 back online just after 1 p.m. yesterday (10/27/14).  Clarifier 4 came online late Friday evening (10/24/14) just after 10 p.m.  It was announced last Wednesday (10/22/14) that crews had fixed the plant’s two largest primary clarifiers, numbers 7 and 8. 

Rotating arms on those clarifiers are now functioning and solids can now be moved out of those tanks to the gravity thickeners for processing. 

The plant needs at least three clarifiers online at any given time during normal operations to process all of the incoming wastewater.  With four currently in operation there is an extra clarifier for redundancy.

The remaining clarifiers at the plant are intentionally offline for routine maintenance and previously planned reconstruction projects. 

The egg-shaped digester operated by Synagro Technologies was restored to full service and resumed converting the plant’s sludge into soil amendment pellets last Tuesday night (10/21/14).

In addition, contractor Parsons last Wednesday (10/22/14) plugged up the two holes in an offline channel to prevent a reoccurrence of wastewater overflowing into the basement area that contains electrical paneling. 

On October 19, a spike in runoff water into the sewer system during heavy rains caused by Hurricane Ana caused an overflow within the Sand Island Wastewater Treatment Plant. Five thousand gallons of partially treated waste water overflowed into Honolulu Harbor. At the same time, some 20 million gallons were thankfully contained in the basement area, damaging the electrical wiring but allowing it to be reintroduced into the treatment process. 

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