No water bodies affected, county staff says
Because of a May 4 equipment malfunction, about 2,000 gallons of raw sewage flowed out of Sarasota County’s Heritage Oaks Regional Lift Station, which is located on Lorraine Road, to the east of the Heritage Oaks Golf and Country Club, county staff reported to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP).
The sewage soaked into the surrounding ground as a result of the dry conditions, the county report pointed out. None of the effluent could be recovered, the report added. “Lime was used on the affected area,” the report said.
Since no surface waters were affected, the report continued, no water sampling was necessary.
County staff was alerted by an alarm about a problem with the lift station’s wet well, the report explained. Upon arrival on the scene, staff confirmed that the pumps had malfunctioned because of an excess of rags and grease, the report noted.
Clean-up of the area and notifications proceeded according to county protocol, the report said.
As the Environmental Protection Agency explains, “Wastewater lift stations are facilities designed to move wastewater from lower to higher elevation through pipes. Key elements of lift stations include a wastewater receiving well (wet-well), often equipped with a screen or grinding to remove coarse materials; pumps and piping with associated valves; motors; a power supply system; an equipment control and alarm system; and an odor control system and ventilation system.”
The Lorraine Road incident began at 10:30 p.m., the report added; the problem was resolved by 10:55 p.m.
The lift station’s address is 5362 Lorraine Road, which is west of Rothenbach Park.
The lift station is part of the Bee Ridge Water Reclamation Facility (WRF) infrastructure, the report added. That plant stands at 5550 Lorraine Road.