Modesto, Calif., Fined for Wastewater Release

Oct. 17, 2017
Sewer main break caused city to release 755 million gal of wastewater into local river

The city of Modesto, Calif., agreed to pay a $165,000 fine for releasing wastewater into the San Joaquin River.

In March 2017, the city released approximately 755 million gal of partially treated wastewater into the river due to heavy storms. Excess rainwater broke a sewer main, causing the facility to flood and the facility to release excess wastewater into the river. The water was treated, but not disinfected, meaning it contained bacteria. According to the Modesto Bee, the Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board found that the city had 59 violations