Local Efforts Minimize Wastewater Release Into


Mar 11, 2001
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Local Efforts Minimize Wastewater Release Into Storm Lake


June 3, 2003

STORM LAKE - An estimated 6,000 to 8,000 gallons of wastewater from the Tyson Fresh Meats plant leaked into Storm Lake late Monday night when a pipeline at the plant’s pump station developed a leak.

The leak was discovered at the former IBP plant at 10:30 p.m. Monday. The wastewater backed up to a second pump station before dumping into a storm water drain leading to the lake. Julie Sievers, an environmental specialist with the DNR in Storm Lake, said the leak could have been worse if it had not been stopped and contained as quick as it had.

“Within 10 minutes, the entire plant, including production, was shut down,” she said. “They built a dike in the parking lot, which minimized the amount (of discharge) that reached the storm drain.”

Iowa DNR, Tyson and Storm Lake city officials worked through the night to clean up the spill. The discharge was pumped back into the pump station and repairs were made on the line by early this morning.

The initial investigation also uncovered a previously unknown 4-inch line discharging into the local storm sewer system, Sievers said. The line was plugged around 1:55 a.m. today, and a search is underway to determine exactly where that line originated from.

Sievers said there was no fish kill, and DNR staff will be onsite today assessing the impact on the lake. Additional field water sample tests will be conducted today, and samples collected during the discharge have been sent to a lab in Storm Lake for further testing.

For more information, contact Julie Sievers at 712-260-0625.

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