Any questions, comments or to schedule a tour please call 440-953-4186
In 1955 the cities of Willoughby and Eastlake entered into an agreement for the construction and operation of a common facility to provide primary treatment and anaerobic sludge digestion for the wastewater of the two communities. This plant was put into operation on August 4, 1961 with a design capacity of 3.9 million gallons per day (MGD).
By 1967, the discharge limitations of the Environmental Protection Agency required that the plant be upgraded. In 1968 additional facilities were designed to provide secondary biological treatment, phosphorus removal, and sludge dewatering and incineration. The plant modifications, finished in 1974, provided a capacity to treat an average flow of 7.8 MGD with a peak of 19.4 MGD.
The plant underwent major modification and expansion in 1985 with improved treatment to meet a new discharge permit. Plant capacity was expanded to treat an average flow of 9.5 MGD with a peak flow of 20 MGD. These latest plant modifications, completed in 1987, included the addition of primary and final settling tanks, aeration tanks, chlorine contact tank, plant water system, chemical feed systems and conversion of the anaerobic digesters to sludge mixing and holding tanks.
The WE-WPCC services the cities of Willoughby and Eastlake, the Village of Timberlake, Lakeline and a portion of Willoughby Hills, Mentor, Willowick and Kirtland. Collection system facilities include 25 sewage lift stations and five (5) sewage flow equalization basins located throughout the service area.
The WE-WPCC is an activated sludge type wastewater treatment plant. It is designed to provide treatment for an average flow of 9.5 MGD and a peak flow of 20 MGD. There are four major unit processes for wastewater treatment and three major sludge handling unit processes.
The wastewater process scheme includes preliminary treatment, primary settling, secondary treatment and disinfection prior to discharge into Lake Erie.
The sludge handling process consists of co-settling waste activated sludge in the primary tanks, gravity thickening of sludge in the mix/hold tanks, dewatering the sludge with the belt press’s and hauling of the sludge cake to an OEPA approved beneficial use site. Sludge production at the plant design flow is approximately 8.5 dry tons of solids per day.
WASTEWATER TREATMENT PROCESS
Wastewater is collected throughout the service area via three major trunk sewers. The sewers converge at the plant influent chamber where a 60-inch diameter pipe with a hydraulic capacity of 60 MGD conveys the wastewater into the treatment facility.
The preliminary treatment facilities include an automatic screening device, a manually cleaned bypass bar screen, and two detritus tanks with related grit collecting equipment.
Upon entering the plant, flow moves to the Bar Screen Building and passes through a screening apparatus where large objects and rags are removed and deposited into a hopper which is deposited into a dumpster for ultimate disposal in a sanitary landfill. In the event that the screening apparatus needs to be taken out of service, a bypass channel equipped with a manually cleaned bar screen is available.
From the Bar Screen Building, flow is channeled through one of two detritus tanks, which separate heavy inorganic matter such as sand and grit from the process flow. Grit is removed from the detritus tanks and washed by reciprocating classifier rakes that transport the grit to the Grit Building where it is discharged into containers until disposal at a sanitary landfill.
Following preliminary treatment, the wastewater is divided equally between four 65-foot diameter primary settling tanks. Accumulated settled solids or sludge, removed by the settling action is collected by rotating collector arms and pumped intermittently by four raw sludge pumps to the sludge mixing and holding tanks.
Secondary Treatment Activated Sludge
Primary effluent from the primary settling tanks flows by gravity to the Primary Effluent Pump Building where it is pumped by four vertical turbine pumps to the aeration tanks for secondary treatment.
Secondary treatment is a complete mix activated sludge process designed to convert materials that cannot be settled – substances such as very finely divided solids and dissolved organics – into water, carbon dioxide, stable inorganic solids and settleable biological floc. The end result of this process is the removal of biochemical oxygen demand, and the reduction of suspended solids and dissolved organic compounds.
The secondary treatment system is comprised of six aeration tanks, four positive displacement blowers, three final clarifiers and associated sludge pumps and chemical feed systems.
Aeration occurs in six 64-foot-long by 64-foot-wide tanks. Each has a side water depth of 14.7 feet. Compressed air is supplied by four 150hp positive displacement blowers located in the lower level of the Aeration Control Building.
Following aeration, flow is divided among three 85-foot diameter final clarifier tanks. Two tanks are equipped with plow-type sludge collectors, while the third is equipped with a suction type sludge collector mechanism. All tanks are provided with surface skimmers to remove floating scum.
Scum is eventually pumped by the waste activated sludge/scum pumps to the primary flow split chamber. Sludge removed from the final clarifiers is either pumped back to the aeration basins as return sludge or is wasted to the primary flow split chamber.
Domestic wastewater has been identified as a principal source of phosphorus in public waterways. A phosphate removal chemical feed system is located in the lower level of the Sludge Thickening Building. The chemical used is ferrous chloride. A polymer feed system aids in phosphate removal by enhancing settling in the final clarifier tanks.
Clarified effluent from the final clarifier tanks is dosed with chlorine solution prior to entering the chlorine contact tank. Chlorine disinfection destroys pathogenic bacteria in the effluent prior to discharge into Lake Erie. Sodium bisulfite is used to dechlorinate the effluent.
Sludge Mixing and Holding
Two 50-foot-diameter sludge mixing and holding tanks provide sludge storage and gravity thickening to dewatering. Co-settled raw primary and activated sludge are gravity thickened in the two 314,000 gallon tanks. The sludge passes through an in line grinder and is pumped by two positive displacement piston pumps to the belt presses in the Service Building for dewatering.
Two Ashbrooke 1.5 meter belt presses are located on the main floor of the Service Building. Prior to dewatering, sludge is conditioned with polymer to increase the solids dewatering capacity of the presses. Two belt presses mechanically dewater the sludge to a range of 26 to 34 percent solids.
The belt presses discharge the sludge cake onto a belt conveyor which ultimately discharges it into a truck for transport to an OEPA approved beneficial use site.
The plant uses a PC-based Plant System Control And Data Acquisition (SCADA) system to monitor and control the operation of the wastewater treatment plant. The SCADA software package is Intellutions IFix.
Examples of the numerous monitoring and control functions include flow rates, pump and equipment status, water levels, pump control, power consumption monitoring, chemical feeds, and wastewater constituents monitoring along with the typical alarm functions. There are four operator interface view nodes located throughout the plant.
Integrated into the SCADA is a radio based remote site monitoring system that provides information and control of the 25 sewage lift stations and 5 sewage flow equalization basins. Pump status, on/off control, basin and wet well level, fill and pumping rates are some examples of typical monitoring and control.
Incoming electrical service is provided to the plant via a 13,800 volt power line supplied by First Energy Company. Three 450-kilowatt diesel driven generators located in the Power Building provide automatic standby power when normal power service fails. The standby generators can also provide peak-shaving when power demands exceed a predetermined setpoint.
The main laboratory facilities are located in the Administration Building and include a general laboratory, a bacteriological laboratory and an instrumentation laboratory which houses a Direct Coupled Plasma (DCP) instrument for inorganic analyses.
The laboratories are equipped for standard chemical and bacteriological testing of wastewater and sludge. Routine plant testing is conducted to evaluate process efficiencies, operational trends, unit process operation and control, and influent and effluent quality monitoring.
The WE-WPCC has an established program requiring industrial users to treat certain industrial and commercial wastes before they discharge into the publicly owned sewer system.
The Industrial Pretreatment Program sets standards for the strength and quality of waste materials discharged by local industries and enforces these standards through routine monitoring and laboratory testing.
The Pretreatment Department covers Willoughby and Eastlake and permits approximately 350 industrial and commercial (including restaurants) industries. The program generates approximately $300,000 annually in fees for permits and surcharges for extra strength wastes. Typically less than 1% of industrial samples collected results in a violation of the Sewer Use Ordinances.
|Plant Design Flows:|
9.5 MGD Design capacity 20.0
MGD Peak Hydraulic capacity
|Chlorine Contact Tank:
One 160,000 gal capacity
78.5 x 30’x 9’ water depth
Two 10.5 MGD capacity ea.
16’x16’x2’ water depth
Two vacuum Type
500 #/day capacity ea.
|Primary Settling Tanks:|
Four 230,000 gal capacity
65’ Diameter x 9.3’ water depth ea.
One Dissolved Air Flotation
80’ x18 ’x11’ water depth
|Primary Sludge Pumps:|
Four vortex 200 GPM
@ 26’ TDH ea.
|Sludge Mixing and Holding Tanks:
Two 315,000 gal. cap.
50’ Dia. x 21.5’ water depth
Two vortex 200 GPM @
20’ TDH ea.
|Mixed Sludge Pumps:
Two plunger 170 GPM @ 180’ TDH
|Primary Effluent Pumps:|
Four vertical turbine
5,200 GPM @ 13.5’ TDH ea.
Two 1.5 meter 650 #/meter/hr
Six 450,000 gal-cap.
64’x64’x14.7’ water depth ea.
One Multiple Hearth
1,230 sq. ft. 6,840 #/hr @ 25% solids
Four positive displacement
4,000 CFM @ 7.0 PSIG ea.
|Ash Slurry Pumps:
Two end suction
50 GPM @ 73’ TDH ea.
|Final Clarifier Tanks:|
Three 510,000 gal cap.
85’ diameter x 12’ water depth ea.
Two 314,000 gal cap.
Bottom: 20’ x 75’
Top: 60’ x 115’
|Return Activated Sludge Pumps:|
1,700 GPM @ 23’ TDH ea.
1,700 GPM @ 52’ TDH ea.
|Chemical Feed Systems:
Phosphorus Removal - Ferrous Chloride, Polymer (2),
Chlorine, Sodium Bisulfite
|Waste Activated Sludge/Scum Pumps:|
Two Nonclog 150 GPM @ 25’ TDH ea.
Sanitary Sewer Overflows
What is a sanitary sewer overflow (SSO)?
A sanitary sewer overflow is the release of untreated sewage into the environment. An SSO can occur when a sewer pipe breaks or is blocked, or when a sewage pump station fails, or when there is a significant amount of rainfall and there is infiltration and inflow of storm water into the sanitary sewer system and the wastewater treatment plant is forced to bypass untreated sewage. Many Lake County communities suffer from infiltration of storm water into the sanitary sewer system. Infiltration of storm water occurs from the natural aging process of the system such as years of wear and tear on moving parts (pumps, valves), freeze and thaw cycles, and deterioration of pipes and joints due to exposure to salt and other corrosive substances.
Why should we be concerned about sanitary sewer overflows (SSOs)?
Untreated sewage contains disease causing organisms such as bacteria, viruses, and protozoa. These disease causing organisms can cause diseases and illnesses such as:
- Gastroenteritis, hepatitis, diarrhea, vomiting
- Typhoid fever, Cholera
- Giardiasis, Cryptosporidiosis
The release of disease causing organisms impacts the water quality of our rivers, streams and Lake Erie. Lake Erie is the source of drinking water for 11 million people, thousands of thousands of which live in Lake County, and it serves as a major recreational asset for swimming, boating and fishing. Lake Erie supports the largest commercial fishing industry in all the Great Lakes. SSOs have an impact our natural resources such as Lake Erie. SSOs can cause public and private property damage from back up of sewage into homeowner basements. SSOs release nutrients such as nitrogen into Lake Erie which contributes to the formation of harmful algae blooms (HABs) that threaten the drinking water supply and the recreational uses of Lake Erie.
The USEPA and the Ohio EPA are now requiring operators of large sewage treatment systems to provide information to the public and notify them when there has been a sanitary sewer overflow. The following links will connect you to various websites for wastewater treatment systems in Lake County where notifications of SSOs are posted as they occur:
Lake County Department of Utilities:
For further information on sanitary sewer overflows and their impact visit:
The Industrial Pretreatment Program regulates industrial facilities discharging wastewater to publicly owned treatment works (POTWs). Industrial users discharge process wastewater often contaminated by a variety of toxic or harmful substances. Because POTWs are usually not specifically designed to treat these substances, Industrial Pretreatment Programs are needed to eliminate potentially serious problems that occur when these substances are discharged into the public sewer system.
The Industrial Pretreatment Program is mandated under the federal Clean Water Act and USEPA has delegated the program to Ohio for implementation. At Ohio EPA, the pretreatment unit is responsible for implementing the pretreatment program. Ohio EPA delegates program responsibilities to the City of Willoughby for the control of industrial wastewater to the Willoughby-Eastlake sewer system.
The industrial boom in the United States during the 1950s and 1960s brought with it a level of pollution never before seen in this country. Scenes of dying fish, burning rivers, and thick black smog engulfing major metropolitan areas were images and stories repeated regularly on the evening news. In December of 1970, the President of the United States created the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency through an executive order in response to these critical environmental problems.
In 1972, Congress passed the Clean Water Act (CWA) to restore and maintain the integrity of the nation’s waters. The CWA required the elimination of the discharge of pollutants into the nation’s waters and the achievement of healthy water quality levels. EPA’s National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permitting program represents one of the key components established to accomplish this task. The NPDES program requires that all point source discharges to waters of the U.S. must be permitted.
To address indirect discharges from industries to POTWs, EPA, through CWA authorities, established the National Pretreatment Program as a component of the NPDES Permitting Program. The National Pretreatment Program requires industrial and commercial dischargers to treat or control pollutants in their wastewater prior to discharge to POTWs.
In 1986, more than one-third of all toxic pollutants entered the nation’s waters from POTWs through industrial discharges to the public sewer system. Certain industrial discharges, such as slug loads, can interfere with the operation of POTWs, leading to the discharge of untreated or inadequately treated wastewater into the waters of the nation. Some pollutants are not compatible with biological wastewater treatment at POTWs and may pass through the treatment plant untreated. This “pass through” of pollutants impacts the surrounding environment by detrimentally altering the receiving waters.
The Willoughby-Eastlake Water Pollution Control Center (WE WPCC) is required by the NPDES permit to implement the National Industrial Pretreatment Program, establish local industrial discharge limits, monitor discharges and inspect industries in the WE WPCC Sewer District. Since 1983, the Pretreatment Program has made great strides in reducing the discharge of toxic pollutants to the sewer systems and to the waters of the nation. In the eyes of many, the Pretreatment Program, implemented as a partnership between, EPA, States and POTWs, is a notable success story in reducing impacts to human health and the environment. These strides can be attributed to the efforts of many Federal, State, Local and industrial representatives who have been involved with developing and implementing the National Pretreatment Program.
The WE WPCC is proud to have shared in this success story as our Industrial Pretreatment Program has experienced many success stories of our own. The industries of the WE WPCC sewer district work in partnership with us in the common goal to protect the environment and the waters of the State of Ohio.
Any comments or questions contact:
John Crislip, Industrial Field Technician – (440) 953-4186
Dianna Passwaiter, Industrial Associate – (440) 953-4186
221 Erie Road
Eastlake, OH 44095