The City of Nogales is now under a State of Emergency, as a partial pipe breach drains untreated waste into the Nogales Wash. Mayor John Doyle signed the proclamation Wednesday afternoon.
During an inspection, a dislodged section of cement that encases one of the manhole accesses was discovered. The break is reported approximately 200 yards north of the intersection of Old Tucson Rd. and the Nogales Wash.
Jeff Terrell, Health Services Director with Santa Cruz County says the partially sheared pipe below the waterline is causing discharge of untreated wastewater into the Nogales Wash.
The location of the partial breach is in a sparsely populated area of the county, said Terrell.
Santa Cruz County Health Services is advising people who live in areas where there is water running in the wash to keep out of those areas.
The number one priority is to ensure the health and safety of the people of Santa Cruz County and Arizona, said Terrell. That is why the Santa Cruz County Emergency Operation Center has been partially activated to support the efforts of local authorities.
Water samples were taken for testing and health officials say they expect the results within 24 hours.
Late Wednesday, Senator John McCain's office says this pipe has been a problem for years and announced his staff is in Nogales to provide assistance for repairs.
A hotline has been established for public inquiries at (520)375-7784.