50,000 gallons of raw sewage inundates Bremerton beach

50,000 gallons of raw sewage inundates Bremerton beach
BREMERTON, Wash. -- A stretch of waterway near Bremerton that's popular with beachcombers and fisherman has been inundated with roughly 50,000 gallons of raw sewage over the last several weeks.

The smell along the Port of Washington Narrows near Bremerton isn't good. And it's even worse for those who find themselves down wind from the workers who are trying to unclog an eight-inch sewer line near the Manette Bridge.

"Stinky, not very pleasant," said resident Nancy Hill. "I don't think I'm going to hang out here on the front lawn while they do this."

Stan Palmer also lives nearby, and said he called 911 after seeing some ugly stuff coming out of a manhole cover during low tide on Sunday.

"It was water coming out but with the toilet tissue, and anytime to see the toilet tissue that's bad," he said.

In fact, it wasn't the first time Palmer saw raw sewage percolating up through the cover.

"Actually, it's been doing it for a while," he said. "It's been doing it for a couple of weeks."

Palmer said he's ashamed he didn't report the issue sooner, but he figured someone had already done so.

Bremerton Public Works officials estimate 50,000 gallons of the stinky sewage has spilled into the narrows. Chances are the sewage has been swept away with the swift-moving tides, but the Health Department isn't taking any chances and has posted warning signs asking for people to avoid touching the water or catching any shellfish for the next four days.

Workers aren't sure what caused the clog, but pressure from the back-up might have ruptured a water-tight seal below the manhole cover. Crews had to wait for low tide to make the repairs.