The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) regulations (30 TAC 319) require that municipalities report wastewater collection system overflows to the local media and local officials when overflows exceed 100,000 gallons.
On Sunday, March 8, 2020 at 8:30 a.m. the City of Pearland discovered that a domestic wastewater spill from the Barry Rose Water Reclamation Facility (Permit # WQ0010134002) collection system occurred due to experiencing critical equipment failure. The estimated time of the overflow occurred between 4 a.m. and 8:30 a.m.
The plant has a bar screen which removes debris and rags from wastewater as it enters the plant. The screen became obstructed with debris and alarms failed to notify City staff, which caused wastewater to not be able to properly flow into the plant. An estimated 150,000 gallons (6% of daily intake) of domestic wastewater overflowed onto the facility grounds, which lead to a drainage ditch that outflows to Clear Creek near Barry Rose and Pearland Parkway. The spill was immediately contained once discovered and the equipment failure corrected. As well, staff has made corrective measures to prevent a recurrence.
The impacted area is Clear Creek south of Barry Rose; any contaminants should dissipate quickly.
City staff is monitoring the situation and testing water upstream and downstream and reporting results to TCEQ. In addition, any wastewater at the Barry Rose facility grounds has been neutralized, removed, and returned to the treatment plant.
Due to the length of time the overflow occurred, City of Pearland recommends citizens avoid any contact with the creek, as well as abstain from any recreational use of the channel from downstream of the Barry Rose Water Reclamation Facility until Tuesday, March 10th. If the public comes into contact with water or soil potentially affected by the spill, they should bathe and wash clothes thoroughly as soon as possible.
For questions or concerns contact Public Works at 281.652.1900.