Water Superintendent Bob Scull told Saline City Council that the foul odor emanating from the wastewater treatment facility in February appears to have been an isolated occurrence. Scull and TetraTech engineer Brian Rubel provided city council with a report on the odor issue at the plant at Monday’s meeting.
“Our observation is that the plant’s odor was less offensive than the average wastewater treatment plant,” Rubel told council. “The controls and processes in place are pretty effective. We only observed a few spots with fairly strong odor.”
Scull and Rubel were unable to pinpoint what caused the problem in February.
“As far the odor at the end of February, that wasn’t a little bit bad. That was awful,” Scull said. “Looking at the data, something may have come through and upset the biological operations of the plant.”
Scull was unable to say what that “something” might have been.
Councillor Dean Girbach asked if it might have been something from one of the companies in Saline. Scull said it was possible, but there was no evidence pointing anywhere specific.
Scull said there was an issue at the south side of the station that required a bypass pump that prevented a lid from being completely closed, but that he checked the neighborhood and didn’t sense any outrageous odors.
Scull and Ruble recommended a series of small and inexpensive fixes to abate the odor. He also said that the second phase of the $4.5 million wastewater treatment plant project should help streamline the treatment process and help eliminate odor.
Mayor Brian Marl said the issue was of profound important to some city residents. He said if the small and inexpensive fixes don’t take, that the city would look at other, more complex and expensive solutions.