State environmental officials have dispatched emergency crews to monitor raw sewage being dumped into the Hudson River from a New York City wastewater treatment plant that caught fire Wednesday and had to be shut down.
The North River Wastewater Treatment Plant, situated across the river from Edgewater in Bergen County, was shuttered after a fire in the engine room Wednesday, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection said in a news release. Untreated sewage has been flowing into the river since the plant was shut down at 5:15 p.m., the release said.
The North River plant has been in operation since 1986 and treats on average 120 million gallons of wastewater a day from Manhattan’s west side above Bank Street and northern Manhattan.
The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection is calculating the potential affect on New Jersey land and water quality. Staff were dispatched on boats to perform visual inspections and take water samples, DEP said.
The department strongly recommends residents avoid swimming, kayaking or other recreation in the river until the situation is resolved. The department also cautions against wading into the water or eating any fish or crabs caught in the river.
New York City staff and contractors are inside the plant trying to bring it back on line