Author Archives: Jay Sellers

Public Notice – Draft Industrial Wastewater Pretreatment Permit for Pinova, Inc.

PUBLIC NOTICE

The Brunswick-Glynn Joint Water & Sewer Compliance & Legislative Committee has approved the release of one new/revised industrial draft permit for public review and comment. This permit has been drafted pursuant to the Code of Federal Regulations, 40 CFR Part 403, the Glynn County Water Use Ordinance, Article III & the City of Brunswick Water Use Ordinance, Article III. The industrial pretreatment permits outline the steps the industries will follow in treating and monitoring their wastewater discharge as well as the steps Brunswick-Glynn Joint Water & Sewer Commission will follow in enforcing the regulations on permitted Industrial Users to the Sewage Treatment Plants.

A copy of this industrial pretreatment permit is available to be viewed by the public at the main office of the Brunswick-Glynn Joint Water & Sewer Commission, 1703 Gloucester Street, Brunswick, GA 31520.  This permit will be available for public review and comment between the hours of 9 AM and 3 PM, Monday through Friday, until July 21, 2017.  Any citizen interested in reviewing the draft industrial pretreatment permit and/or commenting on it may contact Angela Walker, Pretreatment Compliance Coordinator at Academy Creek Wastewater Department at 912-261-7143 to arrange a time for reviewing the permit or visit the main office and ask to view it.

You may also view a digital copy of the draft permit here: PINOVA_FINAL DRAFT PERMIT_Effective_Aug-1-2017

Public Emergency Notification System is Now Available

The BGJWSC has begun using a Public Emergency Notification System for immediate mass communications of emergency information.

Effective at 8:00 am on Thursday, June 22, 2017, all boil water advisory alerts, unexpected road closures and unplanned service outages will be communicated to subscribers using this emergency notification system. This system, produced by Everbridge, Inc., will allow the public to set up multiple means of communication, including text, land-line phone message, cell phone message and email. If we fail to reach you using one method, the system will automatically roll over to the next method until you confirm receipt of the message. A brief introduction of this system is available in the orientation video below:

Existing customers that have provided an email address will receive an email to confirm their preferences for the service once their data has been put into the system. However, please feel free to register now, if you wish, as this data migration may take some time.

Those of you that have previously received emergency notifications via email from our online subscription service will find that system will be phased out by the end of August, 2017 at which time all emergency notifications will be sent out via this Public Emergency Notification System. All non-emergency notifications will continue to be sent via the website email system, as outlined on the Subscribe to Updates page on our website.

I’m standing by to assist if you have any questions on how to make the transition or if you have questions about how to register for the new Public Emergency Notification System.

Sincerely,

Jay Sellers, Public Information Officer
jsellers@bgjwsc.org
912.261.7123

Road Closure – 1400 Block of Windward Drive on St. Simons Island – Monday, June 19, 2017

Attention

Road Closure Notification

In order to perform sewer service repairs in the area, the 1400 block of Windward Drive in Sea Palms will be closed to thru traffic, between Colonial Drive and Great Oak Place, from 8:00 a.m. on Monday, June 19th, 2017 until 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, June 20th, 2017. Homeowner access will be maintained but all other traffic should be prepared to take another route.

BGJWSC crew members will be repairing a broken 4″ clay sanitary sewer service connected to 1411 Windward Drive.

For more information on the project, please contact Jay Sellers at 912.261.7123 or Charita Emory at 261.7151.

The BGJWSC apologizes in advance for the inconvenience.

Sanitary Sewer Overflow on St. Simons Island – June 9, 2017

Update 6/12/2017 at 9:41: A map has been added below to indicate the affected area. More details as to the cause of the spill and the results have also been added.

The Brunswick Glynn Joint Water & Sewer Commission, operating under NPDES Permit GA0025313 in accordance with aforesaid permit and DNR Regulation 391-3-6-05 Emergency Actions, hereby make public notification of a wastewater spill that was reported on Friday, June 9, 2017 from an electrical failure at sanitary sewer pumping station 2023.

Date of Spill: 6/9/2017

Time: 10:00 AM

Location of Spill:
Gascoigne Lodge
1000 New Sea Island Road
St. Simons Island, Georgia 31522

Cause of Spill:  An apparent electrical equipment malfunction at sanitary sewer pumping station 2023 at 43 Kings Way caused the sewer system to surcharge and overflow at a manhole at 1000 New Sea Island Road behind apartment 9.

Estimated Volume of Discharge: >10,000 Gallons. Historical flow estimates at this pumping station place the discharge in the area of 10,000 to 20,000 gallons, though the volume of rain over the previous week may have led to a high concentration of ground water in that discharge.

State Waters Discharged: Gascoigne Pond

Corrective Action Taken: JWSC personnel repaired the electrical equipment malfunction at pumping station 2023 at 43 Kings Way and the station was brought back to working order. The JWSC spread lime on the affected area of the shoreline, approximately 6 square feet. The JWSC is also are running two bypass pumps in Gascoigne Pond to aerate the affected receiving waters. The JWSC laboratory will continue to test this area.

Regulatory Compliance: Signs were placed along the immediately affected areas to indicate the presence of a sanitary sewer overflow (SSO). The Environmental Protection Division of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources was notified, along with local authorities and the Glynn County Health Department District Environmental Health Manager.

Immediate Results and Investigation: As of 8:44 on Monday morning, June 12, 2017, pumping station 2023 is functioning properly again. The Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) communications equipment has been replaced and tested using a ‘known-good’ backup unit. The water in the associated pond where the overflow drained to has been aerated following the discovery of the spill, with staff reacting with the pumping equipment within two hours of responding to the situation. Aeration dissipated the odor nearly immediately. No fish were killed in this event. This was likely due to the fact that much of the overflow was very dilute from rain flow and groundwater inflow and infiltration entering the station.

Our sewer pumping stations transmit failures at the station via SCADA equipment. Under normal circumstances, the crew responsible for monitoring the station for alarms can remotely correct failures. We have staff available 24 hours a day, seven days a week that are licensed, certified by the state, trained and qualified to perform routine maintenance, such as the replacement of pumps, antenna, power breakers, electronic circuit boards, and wiring to the electronics. We also have the capability to set float switch points, such as those that trigger the pump to operate and those that trigger high water alarms.

As we do not presently have a licensed electrician on staff, we contract out any primary electrical work from the Georgia Power pole to the main breaker at the station. All points beyond the main breaker at the station are maintained by JWSC staff or Data Flow Systems (DFS), our SCADA hardware and software provider. The JWSC management has approved adding a licensed master electrician in the coming fiscal year, contingent upon budget adoption.

After investigations over the weekend (6/9-6/12), it appears that the remote control communications device, called the Telemetry Control Unit or TCU, malfunctioned. The two submersible pumps at the station did not fail and testing has confirmed that they are in working order, having been replaced with new pumps on or about October of 2016. Burned contacts were cited, which would have caused the TCU to not give the pumps the “run” command. The red alarm light on top of the station, which activates independently from the TCU contacts, did engage. However, an audible horn and alarms to SCADA did not transmit by radio to the on-call staff member. In a certain sense, the redundant alarms failed, as did the TCU, creating the “perfect storm” effect. That doesn’t fully explain the lack of alarms we expected by radio, as the programming logic generally dictates that a fault code would be sent if communications fails. Our present system does not have a feature available that would enable an alarm via SCADA if a pump hasn’t run within a specified period of time.

Staff will be communicating with both DFS and our electrical contractor to determine what caused the failure, whether it was a hardware failure, a power surge, a power phase problem, lightning, etc., and how to minimize the risk of failure in the future. Rest assured that this failure was isolated and there are no indications that any of the other pumping stations have suffered from the same electronics/electrical failure at this time.

Sanitary sewer overflows are not a new occurrence. Aging infrastructure continues to pose challenges. During a reorganization of the Systems Pumping and Maintenance Division in 2014, policies and procedures were updated to more accurately follow EPA and EPD guidelines, and SSOs are being more faithfully declared.

Contact for Any Additional Information:

Kirk Young, Superintendent
Systems Pumping and Maintenance Division
Brunswick-Glynn County Joint Water and Sewer Commission
Phone Number 912-261-7152
Email kyoung@bgjwsc.org

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This notice is being made available immediately to all local print and radio media to allow for publication and notification. A formal advertisement will be run in the Brunswick News at the next regular printing to satisfy the statutory needs to distribute via a local paper of record.

Road Closure – 2200 Block of Pinewood Drive in Brunswick – Monday, June 12, 2017

Attention

Road Closure Notification

In order to perform sewer main repairs in the area, the 2200 block of Pinewood Drive in Magnolia Park will be closed to thru traffic, between Poinsetta Circle and Cherry Street, from 8:00 a.m. on Monday, June 12th, 2017 until 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, June 13th, 2017. Homeowner access will be maintained but all other traffic should be prepared to take another route.

For more information on the project, please contact Jay Sellers at 912.261.7123 or Charita Emory at 912.261.7151.

The BGJWSC apologizes in advance for the inconvenience.

Urbana Park Area Improvements

Firefighter Casey Spradlin tests hydrant flow in the Urbana Park area on May 19, 2017.

The Brunswick-Glynn Joint Water & Sewer Commission is pleased to announce that repairs made to the BGJWSC water system within the Urbana area of the City of Brunswick yielded both increased flow capacity and water pressure increases for the homes in the affected area as well as increases in pressure at associated fire hydrants in that area.  The result is a substantial improvement in firefighting capabilities.

Since November, 2015, the BGJWSC has been working in conjunction with the City of Brunswick to upgrade water, sewer, storm drainage and paving in the area known as Urbana Park within the City limits. This section of Brunswick, located in the grid between Gloucester Street and L Street from MLK Jr. Boulevard to Hwy 17, has not seen significant utility improvements in 40-plus years, leading to low fire protection and domestic service pressure due to corrosion in water mains which obstructed the flow in those water lines, much like clogged arteries. These old corroded and obstructed lines are a major concern for the BGJWSC, as the resulting low pressure puts many homes at higher risk of total loss due to fires that could not be controlled with the available water. BGJWSC staff teams with City of Brunswick Fire Department personnel in testing the water pressure at fire hydrants throughout the service area. Tests conducted in the Urbana Park area since the construction achieved substantial completion indicate much greater pressures and flows at the fire hydrants in this area.

Firefighter Casey Spradlin tests fire flow while Capt. Peter John Buglino and Water Distribution Superintendent Derrick Simmons monitor the progress.

Todd Kline, Senior Engineer of the BGJWSC, stated that “Thanks to the improvements that we’ve seen within the Urbana Park area, we’re taking the initiative to identify areas lacking sufficient fire protection. The policy on how that need is defined is being developed now. We look forward to outlining that initiative with a visual of areas that have the greatest need.” Kline went on to say that crews supervised by Derrick Simmons, Water Distribution Superintendent, will work closely with staff from both the City of Brunswick Fire Department and the Glynn County Fire Department to closely monitor results from routine fire flow testing and will prepare a map for the public highlighting the areas of concern which will accompany project updates delivered to Commissioners on a monthly basis during public meetings.

With the success of this project, the BGJWSC is seeking to identify other areas of concern within all districts, especially where low pressure will affect fire protection. While some of this repair and replacement can be completed by BGJWSC staff, some projects exceed our existing staff’s capability. Where funding is available, BGJWSC will seek to prioritize contracts that will enable us to quickly and effectively improve fire service pressure across our entire user base. As SPLOST 2016 funding is focused upon major sanitary sewer collection system upgrades, any immediate upgrades will be funded by user rates from the regular operations. Any urgent project that is presently unfunded may require other funding sources to cover the cost.

BGJWSC Executive Director Jimmy Junkin added “As fire protection is a service that is utilized by not only rate payers but also visitors to Glynn County, we are going to be making significant investments of both time and money to ensure that anyone that is able to make use of our services will have confidence and trust that the water pressure and volume will be there when it’s needed.”

Road Closure – 300 Block of Myrtle Street on St. Simons Island – Thursday, June 8, 2017

Attention
Road Closure Notification

In order to perform sewer main repairs in the area, the 300 block of Myrtle St on St. Simons Island, between Beachview Drive and Park Lane, will be closed to thru traffic from 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, June 8th, 2017. Homeowner access will be maintained but all other traffic should be prepared to take another route.

For more information on the project, please contact Jay Sellers at 912.261.7123 or Charita Emory at 261.7151.

The BGJWSC apologizes in advance for the inconvenience.

Budget and Rates Town Hall Meeting Schedule – 2017-2018 Fiscal Year

Increasing costs to operate and maintain existing infrastructure while providing the current level of service or better has led the Brunswick-Glynn Joint Water & Sewer Commission to consider raising water and sewer rates as well as many of the fees associated with the services provide by the BGJWSC. Water and sewer tap-in fees will need to be higher for new construction to cover the capital costs associated with capacity required to serve new users or new connections to the water and sewer systems. Developers are also taking on the burden of paying for new development plan reviews and inspections. These changes will help prevent existing customers from bearing the costs of increasing capacity needed for new customers or new developments.

The management, staff and members of the Board for the BGJWSC will be hosting town hall meetings June 14 and 19 to open up discussion with the community regarding changes that will affect all rate payers and developers beginning with our July 1st billing period.

Main topics will include:

  • How the Capital Improvements Plan (CIP) impacts operations, maintenance, development and BGJWSC rates and fees.
  • Why a significant borrowing, known as bond issue, will be required to keep us on track.
  • What methods management is taking to ensure that the organization is slim yet effective.
  • How the BGJWSC is working hard to put the cost of development on the developers and not on the bills of ratepayers.
  • What caused debt owed to us by current and past customers to grow and what we’re doing to reduce it.
  • How the BGJWSC aims to provide the highest quality service possible with the most reliable water and sewer infrastructure far into the future.

First Town Hall Meeting:

When – 6:00 PM on Wednesday, June 14, 2017
Where –  St. Williams Catholic Church Parish Hall
2300 Frederica Rd St
Simons Island, GA 31522

Second Town Hall Meeting:

When –  6:00 PM on Monday, June 19, 2017
Where – Howard Coffin Park
1402 Sonny Miller Way
Brunswick, GA 31520

Special Called Meeting for Budget and Supporting Rate Schedule Adoption:

When – 2:00 PM on Thursday, June 29, 2017
Where – BGJWSC Commission Meeting Room
1703 Gloucester St
Brunswick, GA 31520

The meetings will be recorded and accessible via our website on the day following the meeting. Those seeking to ask questions but unable to attend can direct those questions to:

Jay Sellers
Public Information Officer
912.261.7123
jsellers@bgjwsc.org

All-Clear for Boil Water Advisory Issued for the Exit 29 Service Area in Brunswick on 5/23/17

Effective immediately, as of 10:56 AM on Thursday, May 25, 2017, all required microbiological testing of water samples from the area affected by the boil water advisory issued for the Exit 29 Service Area in Brunswick on May 23, 2017 has passed. Results have been verified by our state-licensed technician within a certified laboratory environment.

This notification is an ALL-CLEAR and water used for drinking will no longer need to be boiled.

Though the water from this system can now be considered to meet safe drinking water standards, please discard any ice made within the last 48 hours.

What is a Boil Water Advisory? READ MORE HERE

Precautionary Boil Water Advisory – Exit 29 Service Area in Brunswick – Tuesday, May 23, 2017

DRINKING WATER WARNING

BOIL YOUR WATER FOR THREE MINUTES BEFORE USING

The Brunswick water system has lost pressure in the Exit 29 service area on Tuesday, May 23, 2017 due to a hit-and-run driver breaking off a hydrant on Baumgardner Road. The affected area includes all BGJWSC customers south of Blythe Island and west of Jekyll Island. As many restaurants and schools are in this area, state guidelines require two twenty-four periods of water testing before this precautionary advisory can be lifted.

This loss of pressure in the distribution system may cause back-pressure, back-siphonage, or a net movement of water from outside the pipe to the inside through cracks, breaks, or joints in the distribution system that are common in all water systems. Such a system failure carries with it a potential that bacterial contamination or other disease-causing organisms could enter the water distribution system. These conditions may pose an imminent and substantial health endangerment to persons served by the water system.

This precautionary boil water advisory is being published as a warning to those that live in, work in, or travel through the affected area. During the period of the loss of pressure, water will also not be available for fire suppression use. The map below indicates the limit to which this precautionary boil water advisory applies:

What should I do?

  • DO NOT DRINK THE WATER WITHOUT BOILING IT FIRST. Bring all water to a rolling boil for at least (3) three minutes, and let it cool before using, or use bottled water. Boiled or bottled water should be used for drinking, making ice, brushing teeth, washing dishes, and food preparation until further notice. Boiling kills bacteria and other organisms in the water. ALL STORED WATER, DRINK OR ICE MADE RECENTLY FROM THIS SUPPLY SHALL BE DISCARDED.
  • Bathing, showering and toilet flushing may be performed using water from the tap without boiling it first.
  • Inadequately treated water may contain disease-causing organisms. These organisms include bacteria, viruses, and parasites which can cause symptoms such as diarrhea, cramps, nausea, headaches, or other symptoms. They may pose a special health risk for infants, young children, some of the elderly and people with severely compromised immune systems.
  • The symptoms above are not caused only by organisms in drinking water. If you experience any of these symptoms and they persist, you may want to seek medical advice. People at increased risk should seek advice about drinking water from their health care providers.

What is being done?

As soon as pressure can be restored to the distribution system, our water lab personnel will take water samples that will be fully evaluated over the next twenty-four to forty-eight hour period following the repair of the main. Once we have determined that there is no longer a threat of harmful bacteria in the water, we will inform you that you are no longer required to boil your water by posting an update here on our website: http://www.bgjwsc.org.

Water System ID#: 1270150

Date distributed: 5/23/17 1:39 PM

What is a Boil Water Advisory? READ MORE HERE