SUGGESTED PROCEDURES FOR CLEANING DOMESTIC WASTEWATER SPILLS OUTSIDE BUILDINGS
- If the spill area is accessible to public or domestic pets, mark the contaminated area to restrict access.2. Wear protective clothing such as rubber or latex gloves and rubber boots when cleaning up a sewage spill. Dispose of gloves and wash rubber boots when leaving spill site.3. Lime may be applied to the affected area, but should only be used or applied by people experienced in using this material. Excess line must be removed after the sewage has been removed. Note that hydrated lime is a caustic material and is dangerous to handle and apply.
4. Do not mix cleaning/disinfecting products or chemicals. Cleaning products can react with one another to produce toxic vapor.
5. If the spilled material can’t be removed using hand tools, a commercial vacuum or pump truck should be used to remove all visible liquid and solid material.
6. When the area is visibly clean, either a chlorine/water solution using Clorox or a bleach that has “sanitizes” or “kills germs” on the label, or hydrated lime, should be applied on the spill area to disinfect. To make a 5% chlorine solution, add 3/4 cup Clorox bleach to one gallon of water. Chlorine concentration can be verified by using test paper available at food supply warehouses or chemical supply companies.
7. If the spill occurred in a heavily populated area, odor may be an issue. If odor is an issue or if the spill is within 100 feet of surface water, hydrated lime should be applied to the area in place of chlorine bleach. Enough hydrated lime should be applied to raise the pH to at least 12. By raising the pH to 12 for at least one hour, the area should be disinfected. The pH can be tested by using pH paper obtained at a chemical supply facility. Because lime is a caustic material, access to the area treated with lime must be restricted during the disinfection period. If using line, any residual must also be cleaned. Lime is highly corrosive to aluminum, so don’t use lime where aluminum is present – use chlorine.
8. After the spill area has been cleansed, and 24 hours after the chlorine solution or hydrated lime has been applied, and any residual lime removed, the barriers may be removed and access to the area restored.