Sewage overflow reported at end of Ferris Street

Becky Vargo • Jan 21, 2018 at 5:45 PM

UPDATE Monday Jan. 22, 2018, 2:45 p.m.

Public Services Director Mark VerBerkmoes said parts to fix the pump station were expected to arrive late Monday afternoon.

In the meantime, workers were checking the station every four hours.

VerBerkmoes said this overflowing manhole was at the bottom of a hill, lower than most basements in the area, so the problem was resolved before any residences were affected.

The pump station serves residents on East Ferris Street, and the Bringham Woods, Copperstone and Lincoln Pines subdivisions.

The Township was contacted shortly after 10 a.m. Saturday and had the backup pump operating by 10:30 a.m., he said.

The vendor who installed the new electronics set the backup to go to the wrong pump, VerBerkmoes said.

Mike Dreese said he was walking his dog Saturday morning when he noticed the raw sewage smell.

He continued down the gravel portion of the dead end of Ferris Street and found the overflowing manhole cover.

Dreese said he alerted the Township at that point.

Original story

Grand Haven Township officials are continuing to monitor the pumps near a sewage overflow reported Saturday morning near the end of Ferris Street off 152nd Avenue.

Public works staff responded after receiving a call shortly after 10 a.m. Saturday.

Public Services Director Mark VerBerkmoes said the crew observed raw sewage spilling from a manhole near the headwaters of a small tributary to Millhouse Bayou.

Workers found that recently replaced electronic controls and alarms had failed at a nearby wastewater pumping station. 

In addition, the redundant or backup level controls had also failed, he said.

Workers were able to reconfigure the pump controls and activate one of the pumps that were used to reduce the wastewater level on the manholes.

VerBerkmoes said the overflow condition was eliminated by 10:50 a.m. Saturday.

By then, an estimated 40,000-60,000 gallons of wastewater may have overflowed.

VerBerkmoes said the Township had not received any reports of homes in the area being affected by the overflow. 

In addition, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality and the Ottawa County Environmental Health Department were immediately notified, he said. Those organizations will continue to monitor the situation along with Township officials.

“DPW Staff are completing frequent site visits to monitor the situation throughout the weekend and expect to have a vendor on site first thing Monday morning to repair and test the failed equipment,” VerBerkmoes said.




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