Baltimore launches live map of sewage pollution — and temporarily stops alerting the public to contamination

Mar 20, 2019

More than 14 million gallons of sewage-tainted water has washed into Baltimore streams over the past two months, but city officials haven’t alerted the public of the contamination.

Federal and state environmental regulators require the city to notify the public anytime at least 10,000 gallons of sewage contamination enters waterways. But the Department of Public Works stopped issuing the alerts in late January, when it launched a live map of sewage overflows on its website.

In response to questions from The Baltimore Sun about the change in practice, public works spokesman Jeff Raymond said Monday the online map meant the city didn’t need to issue “a news release or even a tweet.”

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