SMYRNA, Tenn. (WKRN) – Smyrna utility and water officials will soon have to give a report to the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) as to how much sewage spilled into a creek over the weekend.
The spill was quite significant, and thousands of gallons leaked into nearby Stewart Creek.
On Tuesday, environmental crews took water samples. Those samples will be tested to make sure it’s not contaminated.
It’s been a challenging few days for HAZMAT workers. They’ve been working 17 and 18 hours a day, even in temperatures as low as 18 degrees.
Now that the creek has been cleaned of waste, water samples are being collected.
“The goal is to have confirmation samples reassuring the Town of Smyrna and its citizens that the waterways are clean,” said Matt Church with Premier Protective Services.
A total of nine samples were taken Tuesday. This is required by TDEC.
“The samples will show from the actually plume where the discharge was here, above stream and below stream,” Church told News 2.
Raw sewage leaked into Stewart Creek after two sewer lines ruptured. The pressure caused several manholes covers to come off.
“We got to label sample and we’ll put the actual destination on our map of where we’re pulling it, which is a map of the waterways in Tennessee,” Church said.
Environmental workers had a short window once the samples were collected.
“The next step is put them on ice and we have four hours to get them to the lab,” Church said. “So, because of the type of samples we are running it’s critical that we get them there in a timely manner.”
Premier Protective Services is a local company, so for them this is not just a job, it’s personal.
“To be honest with you, we’re local boys,” Church said. “We live in La Vergne and the Smyrna area so this is not only a project this is our home. We rely on the independent creek and the Lake for you know our own drinking water. So, it’s very personal that we get the contaminates out, so it’s a little more than a job, our kids play at these parks and play in these creek, so we are going to make sure it’s the best of our ability.”
A third party will also come and take its own samples just to confirm the water is back to normal.
The water samples were taken to Test America in Nashville to be analyzed.