Officials in Charlotte say materials dumped into the sewer system for the second time within a couple of days did not include PCB’s as originally suspected.
Charlotte officials said yesterday that tests indicated that the substance flowing into Sugar Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant was ethanol, which is typical of a fuel spill. There is no threat to drinking water. Work crews are inspecting sewer pipes upstream of the Sugar Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant where the contamination was found to try locating the source of the problem.
Utilities Deputy Director Barry Shearin said that while it hasn’t been determined if the substance was the result of an accidental spill or an intentional dumping, the volume of the substance suggests an illegal dumping.
"It would be surprising if it was an accidental spill. For it to show up in that concentration in our plant would insinuate that it would be more than a homeowners volume for instance," Shearin said.
The latest incident was discovered Saturday evening when employees detected an unusual odor.
Cleanup operations are continuing at the city's Mallard Creek wastewater plant, where chemicals including PCBs were detected Thursday. Officials say there appears to be no connection between the Sugar Creek and the Mallard Creek incidents.