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'No Swim' Advisory: Sewage Spills Into Mountain Island Lake

'No Swim' Advisory: Sewage Spills Into Mountain Island Lake

Power outage leaves 73,000 gallons released without final treatment step.

'No Swim' Advisory: Sewage Spills Into Mountain Island Lake

Diagram with where spill occurred on McDowell Creek, immediately upstream of Mountain Island Lake.

You can check back with Charlotte-Mecklenburg Storm Water Services to see when the advisory has been lifted, but with upcoming rain (as with all rains), people should exhibit caution for a day or two after the rain as runoff brings a lot of bacteria into lakes.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Storm Water's website for information on No Swim Advisories is here:

The following is a press release from Charlotte-Mecklenburg Storm Water Services:

Huntersville, NC – A NO SWIMMING advisory has been issued today for a portion of Mountain Island Lake in Huntersville.

The “no swimming” advisory was issued after approximately 73,000 gallons of partially treated wastewater discharged to McDowell Creek Cove on Mountain Island Lake on March 26, 2014 at 4901 Neck Road. The discharge was caused by a brief power failure on the disinfection system at the McDowell Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Utilities staff immediately diverted flow in to storage basins until the disinfection process was back on-line.

Water samples will be collected by Charlotte-Mecklenburg Storm Water Services staff. Sampling will continue until levels of fecal coliform bacteria fall below 200-colonies/100 ml, which is the level determined to be safe for swimming. When bacteria counts reach this level, the no swimming advisory will be lifted.

Rusty Rozzelle, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Storm Water Services’ Water Quality program manager, said the advisory is standard procedure. "It was necessary to close the areas to recreation because of the potential risk to human health as Mountain Island Lake is designated as recreational waters,” said Rozzelle.

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Tell your Riverkeeper if you see:

  • Sewage Overflows
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  • Illegal clearing of buffer areas
  • Fish kills 
  • Unpermitted discharges
  • Other issues that concern you

Click here to fill out a pollution reportor to report water pollution to Catawba Riverkeeper by phone, call 1-888-679-9494 or 704-679-9494.  In addition, to informing your Riverkeeper, you should also report spills or contamination to federal, state and local environmental officials.

To report South Carolina water pollution call 1-888-481-0125.

To report North Carolina spills or fish kills, call your local regional Department of Environment & Natural Resources office during normal business hours (704-663-1699 for most Catawba basin areas or (828) 296-4500 for Burke, Caldwell, McDowell and other mountain counties) or 800-858-0368 after hours.  (For more information on NC spill reporting, click here)

715 N. Church St., Suite 120 . Charlotte, NC 28202 . Phone: 704.679.9494 . Fax: 704.679.9559