In this week's water and wastewater news, a woman from Florida cuts power to lift stations in Bay County; a report from the EPA shows six treatment plants in Arizona's Navajo Nation have violated the Clean Water Act for years; an Iowa man drives his Chevy into a wastewater lagoon; and the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality lifts its warning about Johnson Utilities' drinking water.

A 33-year-old woman from Panama City, Florida, was caught on video and later arrested for allegedly tampering with a number of municipal wastewater lift stations in Bay County.

She was apparently seen on camera cutting power to facilities in Panama City and Panama City Beach. The facilities’ alarms went off, warning city workers of the problem and likely saving the city hundreds of thousands of dollars in potential damage, according to incident reports.

She was charged with two counts of burglary and police expect she’ll face additional charges.

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A report from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency disclosed that six sewage treatment plants in Arizona’s Navajo Nation have violated Clean Water Act regulations for a number of years.

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The Navajo Tribal Utility Authority made agreements with the U.S. EPA and the Navajo EPA and will spend $6 million to update its treatment plants to comply with regulations.

The six plants haven’t met the limits for pollutants and bacteria, and the plants’ total discharge also was excessive, according to the U.S. EPA.

According to research done by Texas A&M University, tribal wastewater facilities see 44 percent fewer inspections than nontribal facilities, and they’re more often noncompliant with regulations.

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Source: Arizona Daily Sun


A 37-year-old man from Hawkeye, Iowa, destroyed his Chevy 2500 after allegedly driving it into a frozen wastewater lagoon.

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The man wasn’t injured, but he was ticketed for failure to maintain control of his truck, and other charges may be pending.

The crash happened at approximately 12:15 a.m., and the man had apparently fallen asleep at the wheel before driving through a ditch and fence and plunging through the ice into the lagoon.

Source: The Courier

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The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) lifted its warning that drinking water from Johnson Utilities of Queen Creek was unsafe for infants due to high nitrate levels.

The utility and ADEQ were at odds over the issue and had previously released conflicting statements about the water’s safety.

In a recent statement, ADEQ said it received a sample showing that the nitrate level met federal drinking water standards.

Source: The Arizona Republic

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