WDRB returns to site of failing Bullitt County sewage plant - WDRB 41 Louisville News

WDRB returns to site of failing Bullitt County sewage plant

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- This week we returned to the site of a failing sewage plant that dumped raw waste into public water.

The finding: Despite a new operator, there's still a sewage problem and it will likely last for years.

"Essentially what you saw in August was just raw sewage," explained Jerry Kennedy, director of the Bullitt County Sanitation District.

Right now it's still sewage going into the creek, but it's being screened, disinfected and highly diluted due to the rainwater. It's not perfect, but progress, according to Kennedy.

It's been the constant effort since September when the Bullitt County Sanitation District took over the failing Hunter Hollow sewage site from Bullitt Utilities.

Last summer, WDRB uncovered an environmental disaster there. The private utility company abandoned the plant, never fully fixing it after a collapse in 2014. The sanitation district took over as the new operator.

"The building has been been repaired -- pumps on the inside rebuilt and repaired," Kennedy said.

The site looks completely different. Weeds cleared away, a fresh coat of pain, fencing installed

"We wanted to get the mess cleaned up for the public," Kennedy said. 

WDRB's Gilbert Corsey couldn't walk at the site six months ago because of all the raw waste that showed as black film covering the ground. Today, the treatment plant -- the rusted-out shell that was once an eyesore -- is gone, and new equipment has been installed. 

But Kennedy still can't stop all the waste from going into the creek. The division of water say that is not supposed to happen -- and although the water is treated and screened, e-coli and ammonia levels remain higher than legal limits. 

"We just cannot overnight fix this," Kennedy said.

The problem, Kennedy says, is that every time it rains, it overflows the system. The pump station is not strong enough for the increased flow.

The sanitation district plans to roll the site into larger sewer upgrades in Bullitt County throughout the next two years. Until then, the situation isn't perfect -- but there is progress. 

"Nothing i can do about it," Kennedy said.

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