COLLIER COUNTY, Fla. -- County officials are asking residents to reduce water usage in the wake of Hurricane Irma due to sanitary sewer overflows happening in the area.
Emergency management officials instruct that under no circumstances should residents be using dishwashers, clothes washers, or otherwise putting water into the sewer system. Due to the high volume of water entering the wastewater collection system, the county is experience sanitary sewer overflows across the county.
The Florida Department of Health recommends the following sewage cleanup procedures.
Cleaning up sewage contaminated items and sewage spills inside your home –
- Limit access to the areas/items. Do not let children or pets play in the area.
- Wear protective clothing such as rubber boots and waterproof gloves.
- Clean walls, hard-surfaced floors and other household surfaces with soap and water then disinfect with a solution of 1/4 cup bleach per one gallon of water. Dry out affected items to prevent mold growth.
- Do not mix ammonia cleansers with bleach as toxic vapors will form.
- Discard items that cannot be washed or dry cleaned, such as mattresses, carpeting, wall coverings and upholstered furniture.
Cleaning up sewage spills outside your home –
- Limit access to the areas. Do not let children or pets play in the area.
- Minor spills requiring immediate attention may be disinfected with regular garden lime from a garden shop. Follow the lime container’s label instructions for personal protective equipment needed. Use lime outdoors only.
- Sprinkle the lime onto the spill so the spill is dusted mostly white on the surface. If the residue is thicker in some places, use a rake to mix the lime and residue into the soil.
- Let the are dry in the sun for a day before allowing access.
For more information, visit www.floridahealth.gov/environmental-health, or www.FloridaDisaster.org.