The city of Ann Arbor has announced that a sanitary sewer overflow took place on Jan. 28, 2014. According to a press release on the city’s website, the overflow was caused by the break of a 16-inch water main on South Industrial Highway, which caused a nearby sanitary sewer line to break.
Untreated water from the broken sanitary sewer line flowed up to the street via manholes, according to the press release. The untreated water then made its way into the city’s stormwater system, to Malletts Creek and, ultimately, to the Huron River. A report has been made to Michigan Dept. of Environmental Quality about the incident, according to the city.
In a conversation with The Chronicle last week, public services area administrator Craig Hupy explained that as the colder weather wears on, the frost level goes deeper. The frost does not freeze the water pipes, but it does cause the ground to shift, which can then cause the pipes to break.
The notification of all press outlets about such incidents reflects a policy change implemented by the city in the summer of 2013.