About 1M gallons of sewage discharged into San Marcos River Feb. 18

Roughly a million gallons of sewage flowed into the San Marcos River on Feb. 18. (Katharine Jose/Community Impact Newspaper)
Roughly a million gallons of sewage flowed into the San Marcos River on Feb. 18. (Katharine Jose/Community Impact Newspaper)

Roughly a million gallons of sewage flowed into the San Marcos River on Feb. 18. (Katharine Jose/Community Impact Newspaper)



Roughly 1 million gallons of untreated sewage overflowed into the San Marcos River near the intersection of River Road and the I-35 frontage road Feb. 18, according to a press release issued by the city of San Marcos.

On the morning of Feb. 18, a generator failed at the city's Main Wastewater Lift Station, which is responsible for moving sewage to a treatment plant. The cause of the discharge was fixed by city work crews that afternoon, and the lift station and wastewater treatment plant are functioning properly now.

The city said its water supply was not affected by the spill, but residents with a private drinking water supply well located within half a mile of the spill site should only use water that has been distilled or boiled at a rolling boil for a minimum of one minute. This includes water being used for drinking, cooking, bathing and brushing teeth.

Residents are advised to continue this practice until they have their well water tested. Disinfection may be necessary.


Downstream utilities and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality were notified of the discharge, and people who purchase public water can contact their provider to determine if their water is safe for personal use.

The public water supply in the Buda and Kyle were not affected by the discharge, according to officials from both cities. A representative for the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority said in an email that it's utilities would not be affected by the event either.

San Marcos, Buda and Kyle are currently under TCEQ-mandated boil-water notices due to low water pressure this week caused by power outages and broken pipes.

Any contact with waste material, soil or water in potentially affected areas should be avoided. If contact does occur, affected individuals should bathe and wash their clothes in a thorough manner as soon as possible.
By Warren Brown
Warren joined Community Impact at the beginning of 2020 as the editor of its New Braunfels paper and now reports the news in San Marcos, Buda and Kyle. Warren previously wrote for the Dallas Observer and Fort Worth Weekly and he brings a passion for truth and equality to his reporting.


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