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Memphis wastewater plant shuts down, sends sewage into Mississippi River

February 28, 2012
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The city of Memphis, Tenn., was forced to send untreated sewage into the Mississippi River after a broken shut-off valve flooded three pump motors and shut down the wastewater treatment facility Saturday, Action News 5 reported.

City officials said they had no other choice but to activate the bypass system in order to avoid wastewater backing up into businesses and homes.

Signs have been posted warning people to avoid contact with the water because it is contaminated and may pose a health risk.

"It''s very unusual and it''s very unfortunate, but at this point there is little we can do," said Dan Gilliom, the city''s public works director.

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