OLDS — Town officials are asking residents to immediately and until further notice cut their use of grey water from sources such as showers, tubs, washing machines, dishwashers and sinks.
That request was made today (Tuesday, June 14) due to the high amount of rain falling in the area.
The rising water level got so bad that grey water was diverted into nearby ditches.
Also, solid waste was suctioned up and deposited in an offsite disposal pond – all because a lift station on the regional line had hit capacity.
In an interview, chief administrative officer Brent Williams said officials operating the regional district line obtained approval from Alberta Environment & Parks (AEP) officials to undertake these emergency measures.
“The storm water had entered into the system and created a surge and it couldn’t keep up,” Williams said. “It looks like the rain has slowed but we’re not out of the woods yet, unfortunately.”
He indicated there was little choice.
“We’re not supposed to do it, but in emergency times like this where we would potentially lose that lift station or – worst-case scenario – it would lose capacity to move the grey water and it would back up into commercial and residential property."
Williams said AEP workers are conducting tests to make sure all is safe.
“We know it’s – not that it’s unsafe, but it’s environmentally unfortunate," he said.