Broken sewer line releases more than 3 million gallons of untreated waste into Blue River tributary

Department of Natural Resources Issues Violation Notice to Kansas City

For more information: 573-751-1010
Volume 37-352 For immediate release: Sept. 28, 2009

Jefferson City, MO. -- The Missouri Department of Natural Resources this evening issued a notice of violation to Kansas City as the result of a sewer line break that has reportedly released more than 3 million gallons of untreated waste into a tributary of the Blue River.

The Department’s Kansas City Regional Office, which is located in Lee’s Summit, responded today to a sewer line break near Marion Park, located south of East Bannister Road and East of U.S. Highway 71. The break was still releasing untreated waste into an unnamed stream that travels through the park before draining into the Blue River. Department staff are at the scene this evening insuring repair of the line.

After the point where the tributary reaches the Blue River, the river travels for another estimated one mile before reaching Swope Park. In addition to ordering the city to stop the release and repair the line, the Department has ordered the City to take water samples in the tributary above and below the site of the release, and to sample water in the Blue River above and below its confluence with the tributary.

Department staff will also be on site Tuesday to conduct additional sampling of the affected areas.

To report an environmental emergency, including sewage overflows, please contact the Department of Natural Resources' spill line at 573-634-2436. To report a non-emergency environmental concern, contact the nearest regional office. A map of regional office locations and contact information is available online at For more information contact the Department at 800-361-4827 or 573-751-3443, or visit the department's Web page at