Supervisors Hahn and Barger Order Countywide Sewer Assessment After Massive Carson Sewage Spill Shuts Down Beaches

San Pedro, CA—Los Angeles County Supervisors Janice Hahn and Kathryn Barger have ordered a countywide assessment of county-run sewer infrastructure in the wake of a series of recent sewage spills.

“The sewer pipe that collapsed in Carson and spilled 8 million gallons of sewage into our ocean in late December was nearly 60 years old,” said Supervisor Janice Hahn. “We need to not only understand why that pipe wasn’t replaced sooner, but how our aging infrastructure in sewer systems across the County is holding up. If we have a much bigger problem on our hands, we need to get ahead of it and that’s what I hope we get from this assessment.”

“Recent sewage spills in Los Angeles County provide an important reminder that we must pay attention to sewer infrastructure that is often out of sight and out of mind,” said Supervisor Kathryn Barger. “Today’s motion ensures our County proactively monitors projects needing repair and develops a clear picture of our long-term needs. We must keep systems functioning and evolving – we can’t afford to ignore them.”

At today’s meeting of the Board of Supervisors the board voted unanimously to support a motion authored by Supervisor Hahn and co-authored by Supervisor Barger to direct the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works to report back to the board in 30 days with an assessment of the condition of the infrastructure of the Consolidated Sewer Maintenance District, a list of planned infrastructure upgrades and repairs, an assessment of long-term funding needs, and a plan to obtain Federal infrastructure funding.  The motion also directs the Department of Public Works to conduct monthly assessments of infrastructure slated to be repaired in order to prevent potential failure.

The Consolidated Sewer Maintenance District maintains 4,600 miles of mainline sewer within the unincorporated areas and 37 cities across the County and is administered by the LA County Department of Public Works.