About 3,000 cubic meters of waste sludge spilled into the Patish Stream, northwest Beersheba, after a processing device at a waste treatment facility broke down late Monday.The reason behind the device’s break was not revealed.An emergency team from the Environmental Protection Ministry carried out an inspection of the area, looking for ways to prevent further damage to the area.The ministry’s team ordered the Mey Sheva corporation in charge of the facility to immediately create a few artificial streams to drain off the waste water. It must also cover the sludge with sand for 24 hours and then clear out all the sludge within the next five days.Mey Sheva was given 48 hours to present the ministry with a report of the incident.Furthermore, the company will be held responsible for all steps of the cleanup process, as well as steps for preventing pests and stopping the bad odor from the sludge.Sewage spills have happened on a regular basis in the past few months. In March, sewage and gray water spilled into streams that lead to Palmahim Beach in Rishon Lezion, causing swimmers to require medical treatment. In February, 100 cubic meters of waste from Haifa’s main sewage line spilled into the Saadia tributary, which leads into the Kishon River. In January, a power outage at a water-pumping station at the Ma’ayanot Ha’emek Water Corporation waste-treatment plant forced sewage to leak into a part of the Kishon River in Kiryat Tivon, near Haifa.Authorities have recommended adding backup generators in the event of power outages, as well as adding systems that will alert authorities immediately as soon as a malfunction happens.