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Raw Sewage is Found Flowing into Turkey Creek After Pipe Breaks - KOAM TV 7

Raw Sewage is Found Flowing into Turkey Creek After Pipe Breaks

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Joplin city crews resurface a drainage channel in Tall Grass Estates after a 20ft joint in a sewage line broke off.

"It floated out and went downstream, the pipe was gone,” says Joplin Public Works Director Nick Heatherly.

Raw sewage leaked into Turkey Creek. The Missouri Department of Natural Resources says the incident violates the Missouri Clean Water Law.   

The Public Works Department found the exposed pipe about two weeks ago. They built a dam and pumped out the wastewater, but don't know how much waste got in the creek.

Heatherly says heavy rainfall in the last month that filled the channel and could have caused the pipe to give way. 

"Probability is exactly that. We just don't know when that actually occurred, when the pipe actually floated out and went downstream."

This 300ft stretch of rocks is all new. City crews have been working to improve this water channel to prevent future erosion.

"Anytime you have a drainage course traveling over an area where there's a sewer line and an excavation that has occurred in the past you always have that potential incident that can occur."

The city has to fix the problem, take water samples, and report back to the state within 60 days.  The pipe has been encased in a five foot block of concrete to keep the problem from happening again. 

“It's nothing that any of us want by any means. But we're doing our work to go out and inspect things as we can now and making sure of the condition of 'em and try to get ahead of 'em if we can find 'em."

Work on the sewage channel is expected to take a few more weeks.

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