Sewage Spills into Grass Valley Creek

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Grass Valley Public Works says thousands of gallons of sewage flowed out into Wolf Creek.

“Digested sludge from our waste water treatment plant,” said Mike Busse, Chief Treatment Plant Supervisor.

About 6,000 gallons of the sludge.

“That’s a lot of raw sewage,” said Dennis Maloney, a Grass Valley resident.

The city says they see the spill as minor but still it caused them to take immediate action to protect the public.

“We are taking it very seriously, we take it as an emergency situation. We did what is called a reverse 911 in conjunction with the county letting down-stream property owners know,” said Tim Kiser, Public Works Director of Grass Valley.

Signs are now posted along Wolf Creek, telling people to have no contact with the water.

“The possibility of bacteria and things like e-coli, which are present in the creek already but probably at elevated amounts after the spill,” said Busse.

Immediately following the spill last week, the city cleaned the water treatment plant property, but says when it comes to the creek, that job is up to mother nature.

“The creek does take care of itself. Luckily the volume of the spill is small, so the dilution factor was quite great,” said Busse.

An answer not acceptable to Ceclia Edwards and her neighbors.

“It seems like it would affect it for ever. That seems kind of like the city’s pad answer. ‘It will clean up in a couple of days, it’s no big deal but it is a big deal to the residents down here,'” said Edwards.

She says this isn’t the first spill in the creek.

“I certainly wouldn’t invite anybody to go fishing. I even tell people not to walk around it. Who knows what you would be stepping in,” said Edwards.

Grass Valley hopes to take down the signs and have the waterway open by the weekend. They are waiting for lab results to prove the water is safe before they open the creek.


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