50k Gallon Sewage Spill Causes Devastating Scene

50k Gallon Sewage Spill Causes Devastating Scene

(DailyVantage.com) – California is no stranger to disasters — natural or manmade — and it seems the state can’t go more than a few weeks without some new problem popping up. Officials had to close beaches late last year due to a sewage spill, and it seems it’s an issue once again, prompting concerns about officials taking proper precautions to prevent these incidents in the first place.

On Monday, February 21, officials in Newport Beach had to shut down beaches due to a spill that leaked 35,000 to 50,000 gallons of raw sewage into the Pacific Ocean. The Orange County Health Care Agency’s Environmental Health Division made the announcement, attributing the leak’s cause to a blocked sewer line beneath a local restaurant. There’s no timeline for how long the waters will remain closed, but it’s becoming a real issue in California.

New Year’s Weekend Spill

In December, California experienced heavy rainfalls, which were unusual for the state. But, while they helped with the drought factor, the rains had a real disastrous effect on the Los Angeles sewer system. The added water caused the system to collapse, resulting in untreated wastewater spilling into the ocean — 7 million gallons.

Crude Oil Spills

It’s not just wastewater or sewage spilling into California’s waters, either, unfortunately. Last October, California had a cleanup on its hands when a pipeline leaked around 25,000 gallons into the ocean around Huntington Beach. Officials claim the leakage happened because a ship’s anchor dragged the ocean’s floor and damaged the pipe, which runs to the Port of Long Beach. The cleanup took several weeks and affected the local area.

The main effects of these spills are twofold: it affects tourism, as people cannot visit the beaches, and typically, the small businesses in the area suffer as a result, too. The other significant impact is on marine life. Fish and mammals suffer, as do birds who frequent the area and ingest materials or get trapped in the oily-laden water.

Accountability is essential when these types of disasters happen. In the case of the Huntington Beach spill, the California Department of Justice opened an investigation into Amplify Energy, the company responsible for the ruptured pipeline. In terms of the sewer systems and blocked pipes, local authorities must hold the companies accountable. Otherwise, we’re bound to see more of the same disasters unfolding. And with several incidents occurring in the last few months alone, it’s clear there’s a problem that needs addressing sooner rather than later.

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