Rains cause sewage spill into Columbia River
The Northeast Tri-County Health District was notified of a raw sewage discharge into the Columbia River in Trail BC on Feb. 17.
Due to heavy rains and significant snow melt, the sewage treatment plant serving the City of Trial experienced an overflow of raw sewage into the Columbia River. This release is expected to continue until conditions improve.
Approximately 939,395 US gallons of sewage overflowed onto the ground and into the river, according to the report. At the time of the spill, river flows at the International Boundary were 70,100 cubic feet per second (or 524,384 gallons per second), helping dilute the impact.
The Columbia River enters Washington approximately six miles north of the community of Northport.
"While human exposure to river water during this time of year is expected to be minimal, we want to make sure river users are aware of the situation," said Matt Schanz, Administrator of the Northeast Tri-County Health District. "These kinds of wastewater discharge exceedances will move through the river system quickly."
The Health District recommends river users exercise caution if they are in contact with river water in the area near the border.