Contamination alert issued at Carlsbad State Beach

CARLSBAD (CNS) – A contamination alert was in effect at Carlsbad State Beach Wednesday due to a 2,300-gallon sewage spill outside the Encina Wastewater Treatment Plant, the second in less than two weeks.

The overflow — caused by a failed pump on a bypass line around a sanitation pipe that collapsed 13 days ago — began shortly after 5 p.m. Tuesday and was under control about 20 minutes later, according to the county Department of Environmental Health.

All the wastewater that escaped the system during the latest utility mishap drained into Encina Creek, which flows into the ocean less than a quarter-mile away.

Signs warning of pollution hazards will stand 1,000 feet north and south of the mouth of the waterway until follow-up testing deems the area safe again for recreational uses.

On Oct. 7, a pipeline 4 1/2 feet in diameter ruptured on the grounds of the treatment plant and spilled thousands of gallons of sewage. In that case, however, sanitation crews were able to keep all of the contamination from reaching the ocean, according to Encina Wastewater Authority officials.

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