Untreated wastewater may have run off into the Wabash River last weekend.
High levels of rain potentially caused an overflow at the West Lafayette Wastewater Treatment Utility, city officials said in a press release.
West Lafayette uses a “combined sewers” system that uses the same pipes for wastewater and stormwater runoff. When there’s enough rain or snow to push the water level past the pipe capacity, the remainder flows into the Wabash.
There is a combined sewer overflow relief interceptor to catch overflow from two of the water collection systems, but extreme storms can still produce enough water to overflow the interceptor, according to the release.
Wastewater Utility staff encouraged citizens to stay away from the Wabash River and other urban streams in the area until Tuesday at the earliest and to always wash their hands after touching water from urban streams.
The West Lafayette Wastewater treatment staff could not be reached for comment before Monday evening.