For Immediate Release
April 8, 2009

KDHE Office of Communications, 785-296-0461

Stream Advisory Issued for the Missouri River in Atchison County

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) is issuing a Stream Advisory for the Missouri River in Atchison County and downstream from the City of Atchison.

On the morning of April 6, KDHE was notified that the City of Atchison lost pumps and motors at its wastewater treatment plant headworks due to a power surge.  It was reported new pumps and motors were expected to be on line within a short period of time.  On April 8, KDHE was informed that after the City’s initial repairs of the pumps and motors, a large circuit breaker failed.  Because of the failure, a loss of power to the headworks caused a bypass of sewage to the Missouri River Missouri River.  Power is expected to be restored by late afternoon on Wednesday April 8.

KDHE anticipates elevated levels of fecal coliform bacteria in the Missouri River as a result of this sewage bypass. Individuals are advised to avoid contact with the River and to restrict pets and livestock from contact with River water until the extent of the impact from the sewage bypass can be determined.

KDHE personnel are in contact with the City and evaluating the extent of the bypass. KDHE has also notified downstream water suppliers and the Missouri Department of Natural Resources in regard to the bypass. 

City of Atchison personnel are on site awaiting a replacement circuit breaker to restore power to the pump station   As soon as the bypass ceases, updated information will be issued regarding this Stream Advisory.