On 7/4/2023 the town performed our monthly 8 hour composite samples as required by our discharge permit. We typically composite the samples and submit them to the lab on the same day, but because of the holiday the samples were not submitted until Wednesday 7/5/2023.
The required monthly E-coli sample is usually not taken until just before going to the lab to ensure the shortest possible hold time.
The latest test resulted in a high ecoli count. The permitted amount is 77 colonies / 100 milligrams per liter, our result was 800 colonies / 100 milligrams per liter. Wednesdays are the normal wasting days at the facility (wasting is the process of collecting solids in the bottom of the primary clarifier to be pumped to a sludge holding tank. The sludge is then hauled to final disposal by a permitted hauler at a later time. Typically about 2000 gallons of sludge is removed.) This process of wasting creates a drop and corresponding spike in flow when discharge returns. The ecoli sample was taken during this spike in flow. The sample was taken at 10:45 am and the flow returned to normal conditions about 11:45 am. The average flow during this period was about 23 gallons per minute, so an estimated 1380 gallons left the facility during this period.
The elevated ecoli numbers were reported to the state and were advised to provide notice to residents. The State requires a 48 hour notice to those pursuing recreation activities in the river. This 48 hour period has passed and there is no standing advisory to the public to avoid the river at this time.
If you have any questions please contact our wastewater operator, Mike Whipple (WSChiefoperator@chelseavt.us) or the Health Officer, Geoff Clayton (firstname.lastname@example.org).