Recent weather creates problems for sewage treatment systems - WNCN: News, Weather

Recent weather creates problems for sewage treatment systems

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JACKSONVILLE, N.C. - When bad weather hits, it doesn't just create problems on the roadways.

"It renders your sewage system inoperable and we got a lot of waste water coming to the top of the ground," said Tom Mattison, who has been serving Onslow and surrounding counties septic needs for more than 30 years.

Mattison says saturated grounds prevent septic systems from filtering through waste properly. He says everyone should know what to do if they start to see sewage in their yard.

"Get some palletized lime to put over all the sewage breakouts. That neutralizes the waste water and the pathogens in it," Mattison says.

However, backed up sewage in your yard doesn't necessarily stay there.

The North Carolina Department of Environmental and Natural Resources released a statement warning people to limit their exposure to area waterways due to the problem. They said that drinking water isn't typically affected when this happens, but that they've been in contact with several water plants.

With so much water already saturating the ground, Mattison says people should do their part to help resolve the problem.

"Use as little water as humanely possible during these real wet spells," Mattison says.

He warns that if you don't, it could cause your septic system to break, costing you hundreds, and even thousands, of dollars.
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