Sewage spill closes Surfers Beach


Posted by
Thu, February 4, 2010


A 300 gallon sewage spill in El Granada closed Surfers Beach for three days, reports Julia Scott in the County Times.

Surfer’s Beach in El Granada was closed Jan. 28-30 after a sewer line ruptured, sending 300 gallons of sewage toward the beach and the ocean. El Granada Sanitary District General Manager Chuck Duffy attributed the leaks to a tree root puncturing the sewer main, which also caused an overflow Jan. 19, although that sewage was contained before it reached the ocean. [...]

San Mateo and El Granada were not the only municipalities that had sewage problems in January. San Bruno sent 16,575 gallons of sewage into the Bay on Jan. 19, according to state records. San Francisco Baykeeper, a local nonprofit advocacy group, has filed suit against San Carlos, Millbrae and the West Bay Sanitary District for similar problems.

GSD Manager Chuck Duffy was not available for comment when we called this morning.


Julia Scott’s article expertly mixes up two unrelated issues.  GSD’s 300 gallon spill was caused by damage to a sewer main from tree roots.  That could happen at any time of year.  The rest of the many spills in January all over the Peninsula were much larger spills due to wet weather overflows.  I think there were no wet weather overflows in the Sewer Authority Midcoastside (SAM) service area this season because SAM has been very pro-active in the last 8 years.

I suppose that the naysayers are working on a way to blame tree root problems on the current GSD Board.

BTW, Julia, the District is the Granada Sanitary District, not the “El Granada Sanitary District.”

Comment 2
Tue, February 9, 2010 7:04am
Dave Ross
All my comments

When a restaurant grease hauler truck, full of grease (3000-4000 gallons) is illicitly dumped down a sewer manhole, the grease solidifies on tree roots and other debris in the pipe and a blockage can be expected along with sewer overflows. Vulnerable manholes should be locked.

Comment 3
Tue, February 9, 2010 5:33pm
Scott Boyd
All my comments

If you know of illicit grease hauler trucks dumping into the sewer system, please call SAM at (650) 726-0124 and local law enforcement.