Owosso sewer overflows into Shiawassee River; no body contact advisory issued

The rain is swamping Rapid City's sanitary sewer system, causing manhole covers to be lifted up. (MGN)
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OWOSSO (WJRT) (6/11/2019) - Heavy rain in the Owosso area caused the city's sewer system to overflow into the Shiawassee River on Monday, leading to a no body contact order.

The overflow started sometime Monday morning, when the amount of untreated wastewater entering the treatment plant exceeded its capacity. The sewage discharge was continuing into Monday afternoon.

The Shiawassee County Health Department said 2 inches of rain fell in about 90 minutes before the sewage overflow started. Saturated soil from repeated recent rains caused more stormwater than normal to enter the system.

Officials are not sure how much untreated wastewater entered the river.

The health department is advising the public to avoid contact with the Shiawassee River downstream from Owosso's wastewater treatment plant. Water ponding in low-lying areas along the river also may contain untreated sewage.

The health department will continue monitoring water quality and lift the no-contact order when conditions improve.