Sewer pipe leak being investigated at Green Bay Correctional Institution

Crews work on sewer lines April 12, 2018, following a leak at Green Bay Correctional Institution in Allouez. (WLUK image)

ALLOUEZ (WLUK) -- The Dept. of Natural Resources and Dept. of Corrections are investigating after untreated waste water was released from a sewer line earlier this week at the Green Bay Correctional Institution.

A blockage in the line outside the prison walls caused sewage to back up and overflow through a manhole, according to DNR spill coordinator Rick Joslin.

The leak was discovered Tuesday, and GBCI temporarily minimized water usage within the institution to limit the amount of water going through the pipe during repairs, according to DOC spokesman Tristan Cook.

“There is nothing to suggest that it was deliberately caused by inmates,” Cook said.

Joslin also could not identify the cause of the blockage.

The investigation is in its early stages, and much of the information is preliminary, Joslin said – and that includes trying to determine how much untreated waste was released.

The release could have started as early as March 28, but it may never be determined exactly when it began. And while there were thousands of gallons of material released, the DNR hasn’t been able to determine the specific amount -- and may never know exactly.

While the release site was relatively close the Fox River, the DNR hasn’t been able to determine if any of the waste made it into the river, but it is possible. There are retention ponds and vegetation between the release point and the river, Joslin noted.

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