Grease Obstruction Forces Sewer Backup In Howell

A sewer back-up occurred late Thursday afternoon that affected Yorkshire Apartments. It’s on the sewer system in a section of town that drains to Howell Public Schools, the Livingston County jail and county complex and Medilodge of Howell.

Howell Interim City Manager Erv Suida says prior to going to the lift station there was an obstruction in the pipe which caused the back-up. Crews tried to get the obstruction out but couldn’t, so they had to pump the sewage from a manhole into a lift station wet well to alleviate some of the rpessuere. Once that was done, crews were able open up the blockage which appeared to be a mixture of grease, non-flushables, rags, wipes and other things that shouldn’t be in the system. Suida says everything was opened up and flowing as of around 9pm and working fine. However, some lower units in Yorkshire Apartments did have some flooding and mainatence crews were taking care of that.

Suida says crews cleaned the sewer line after the obstruction was removed but they’ll do additional inspections to make sure nothing else is there, although he says they’re pretty confident it was mostly grease. Suida says they’ll continue looking into why there was so much grease in the line and will be reaching out to some of the commercial kitchens in the area, along with the county jail to make sure grease traps are being properly serviced. (JM)

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