Sewage flows into Bishop Creek
March 28, 2016
by Arnie Palu
Late Friday Afternoon the Bishop Paiute Tribe and Inyo County Environmental Health Department issued a joint statement detailing a spill of sewage into Bishop Creek. A clog in the Bishop Paiute Reservation sewer system is being blamed.
Statement from the Bishop Paiute Tribe and Inyo County Environmental Heath:
The Bishop Paiute Tribe, the Inyo County Environmental Health Department and the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power are working in a collaborative effort, in conjunction with the Lahontan Regional Water Quality Control Board, in investigating the report of an inflow of sewage into the South Fork of Bishop Creek. The spill was caused by an overflowing sewer manhole due to a clog in the Bishop Paiute Reservation sewer system and was reported by the Bishop Paiute Tribe Environmental Office the evening of March 24, 2016. The release traveled approximately 1500 feet across tribal land before entering the South Fork of Bishop Creek, at a point near the northeastern exterior boundary of the Reservation. The Tribe and local agencies are working together to obtain more information regarding the duration and magnitude of the release and to conduct any follow up stream monitoring and any remediation deemed necessary.
Preliminary information received suggests that bacterial levels in the creek are, at this time, not higher than levels typically found in Bishop Creek during the summers, however, people, and their pets, are advised to refrain from any body contact activities in Bishop Creek at this time until more information is obtained. This advisory applies to the South Fork of Bishop Creek from the See Vee Lane area and downstream, to the east. Areas of Bishop Creek upstream of this area should not be impacted.