Increase In Sewer Smell Complaints

Smithfield Public Utility Director Ted Credle says his department has seen a recent increase in the number of complaints about a strong sewer smell.  Credle said the complaints are primarily in the South Smithfield area and have been occurring late at night or early in the morning.

Credle said he has not been able to determine a pattern to the complaints but says, “It’s explainable but not excusible.”  All have occurred during low-flow times for sewer service in the town limits.

Credle said staff have conducted field investigations but have not been able to locate any spills or determine any problem with town equipment.  Credle has now asked Johnston County officials to assist with the investigation, pointing out the County operates the Waste Water Treatment Plant off South Brightleaf Boulevard in South Smithfield.

Chandra Cox Farmer, Director of the Johnston County Department of Public Utilities said, “The County has made no recent modifications to the wastewater treatment plant operation.  We have requested addresses where people have complained, so the County can investigate further.  The County has recently completed a project to rehabilitate some of the sewer mains and manholes in the vicinity.  However, it should not have caused odor.”

Many of the complaints have come from residents along Chestnut Street, Rosewood Drive and Baker Street.

If anyone experiences a sewer odor complaint they are asked to contact the Town of Smithfield. Farmer said the Town and County are in communication to investigate and address any concerns.

“Poop stinks. I’m sorry,” Credle told members of the Smithfield Town Council at their monthly meeting.