Sewage leaks into Kishon River near Haifa after power outage

An effort is now underway to upgrade the existing system in cooperation with the Environmental Protection Ministry.

By
January 17, 2016 22:19
2 minute read.
FACTORY WORKERS watch sewage flow into the Kishon River in 2007

FACTORY WORKERS watch sewage flow into the Kishon River in 2007. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later

The Environmental Protection Ministry on Sunday opened a criminal probe after a power outage caused sewage to leak into the Kishon River over the weekend in Kiryat Tivon, near Haifa.

Authorities were able to stop the leak and repair the infrastructure at the Mayanot Haemek Water Corporation waste-treatment plant on Saturday, and said sewage will remain present in the water for days to come.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


An initial investigation showed the leak was caused when a water-pumping station became overworked, causing a power outage.

As a result of this outage, wastewater was able to leak out, but there was no warning system in place to alert authorities of the malfunction.

An effort is now underway to upgrade the existing system in cooperation with the Environmental Protection Ministry.

Yonatan Shavit, head of environment department at the Kishon River Authority, told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday the leak does not pose any danger to humans unless they swim in the river, but that animals in the area could be seriously hurt since this part of the river serves as an ecological corridor for wildlife.

Though claiming the river is safe, overall, Shavit warned against entering the contaminated waters for now since pathogens could enter the body while swimming, causing diarrhea or even death for those who are weak.

JPOST VIDEOS THAT MIGHT INTEREST YOU:


Incidents like this are all too common, according to Shavit.

“Fortunately, we reacted quickly this time,” he said. “But this kind of leak happens each and every month.”

Shavit said a sewage leak of this nature in the rainy winter months can be washed away in two to three days, but that in the dry summer months the same result takes almost a week.

A big leak that occurred over the summer killed hundreds of fish.

Meanwhile, Shavit recommended that pumping stations install back-up generators for when the power goes out, as well as to make sure that the companies responsible pay fines and are brought to court.

“Hopefully, in the future, people will be able to enter the Kishon River.”

After decades of sewage contamination, beginning in the 1930s from petrochemical plants, efforts have been made in recent years to clean up the notorious Kishon.

In August 2015, an effort began to pump 1.1 million cubic meters of standard drinking water into the Kishon annually to increase its flow and improve water quality.

Sharon Udasin contributed to this report.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Workers strike outside of the Teva building in Jerusalem, December 2017
December 18, 2017
Workers make explosive threats as massive Teva layoff strikes continue

By MAX SCHINDLER