Sewage bypass in Platte County enters nearby Weatherby Lake

For more information: 573-751-1010
Volume 37-409 For Immediate Release: Oct. 30, 2009

JEFFERSON CITY, MO. -- The Missouri Department of Natural Resources is investigating a bypass which occurred late Wednesday night in the vicinity of 8316 NW Forest Drive in Platte County releasing an estimated 1,000 gallons of sewage into Weatherby Lake.

The Kansas City Public Works notified the department yesterday of a bypass that occurred late in the evening of Oct. 28. A power failure caused one of its lift stations to go off-line. While the pumps were off, sewage began overflowing from a manhole into nearby Weatherby Lake. The Kansas City Public Works were able to get the lift station back on-line quickly, which prevented additional sewage from being discharged.

The department conducted monitoring and sampling yesterday at Weatherby Lake to determine if the water quality at the lake was affected from the bypass. However, heavy rainfall has occurred after the sewage bypass and will impact sampling results. Heavy rainfalls may also contribute large amounts of bacteria to surface water bodies and although this was a relatively low volume bypass in contrast to the lake volume, residents are encouraged to avoid contact with the lake water at this time.

The release of untreated sewage from sewer systems, such as this manhole, is known as a sanitary sewer overflow and is a threat to public health and the environment. Most of the overflows occur during wet weather events. However, in this instance, the overflow occurred during a dry weather event.

To report an environmental emergency, including sewage overflows, please contact the Department of Natural Resources' spill line at 573-634-2436. For more information contact the department at 800-361-4827 or 573-751-3443, or visit the department's Web page at