Water & Wastewater

Elizabethtown City Hall

The Wastewater Department operates and maintains facilities which provide Elizabethtown treatment of its wastewater. Wastewater is treated at the Valley Creek Wastewater Plant. The Wastewater Department is staffed with 27 employees. Support functions within the department include the maintenance shop, State certified bacteriological and inorganic chemical laboratories, and pretreatment program administration.


 Design Capacity: 7,200,000 gallons per day
 Average Daily Flow: 5,920,000 gallons per day
 Type of Treatment: Primary and Secondary
 Treatment Process: Rag removal, grit removal, Oxidation ditch process, secondary settling, chlorination and dechlorination and then discharge to Valley Creek
 Size of Sanitary Mains: 6, 8, 10, 12, 15, 24 and 42 inches
 Size of Storm Mains: 10, 12, 15, 18, 24, 30 and 36 inches

The responsibility of the pretreatment program administration is to enforce Elizabethtown's Sewer Use Ordinance as it pertains to commercial, industrial, and residential wastewater discharges. Primary activity deals with the inspection and monitoring of industrial activities and pretreatment facilities. Wastewater discharge from these facilities is tested on a regular basis to ensure compliance with State and Federal regulatory requirements.

The maintenance shop provides preventative and breakdown maintenance services for all City departments.

State certified laboratories provide analytical services to support plant operations, monitor industrial discharges, and fulfill regulatory reporting requirements.

Smoke testing is an efficient and cost-effective method of locating major sources of inflow (stormwater) and infiltration (groundwater) that can cause sanitary sewer overflows (SSO's) and disrupt normal wastewater treatment plant operations. SSO's are a threat to public health, negatively impact the environment, and are costly to cleanup.

Smoke testing involves forcing of a non-toxic, almost odorless, non-staining smoke into the sanitary sewer system for testing purposes. When the liquid is injected into the manhole system, it atomizes into visible smoke and any outlets connected to the sewer will vent the smoke. Field crews will observe from the street any outlet exiting smoke. While most people will not notice the smoke, the possibility exists for smoke to enter a residence via plumbing defects in the home and dry drain traps. A drain trap is an S-shaped curvature in drainage piping that holds a level of water to block gasses from the residence. Traps located in areas not used regularly will normally dry out. To prepare for smoke testing, pour a gallon of water into each seldom used floor and sink drain.

The smoke that is manufactured specifically for this type of testing is not dangerous or toxic, leaves no residual stains, and has no lasting effects on living beings. For specific information about the smoke product please visit the manufacturers web site at www.hurcotech.com. LiquiSmoke test data and safety information can be found in the download center section.

City personnel will place door hangers on all residences within the test area several days prior to smoke testing.