Provincetown Declares Sewer Emergency In Downtown

Commercial Street in ProvincetownPhoto: Getty Images

PROVINCETOWN, Mass. (WBZ NewsRadio) — If you've got to "go" in Provincetown, you might want to head to Truro.

The town has declared a sewer emergency, and part of its waste system is at risk of an overflow.

Officials are warning residents and guests on the town's vacuum sewer system to "only flush [toilets] when absolutely necessary," and not to shower, use the dishwater or do laundry for the next 48 hours.

Town Manager Alex Morse told WBZ NewsRadio that about a third of the town's sewer customers are effected by this outage. Morse said a huge surge of water from a recent rainstorm knocked out the vacuum sewer for four hours, causing a buildup of waste. He said the critical repair work his crews are doing could be done in less than 48 hours, which is a worst-case scenario.

Most of the affected customers are restaurants, bars, and hotels. All public restrooms are closed Thursday and Friday, and 18 porta-potties are being brought to the area and put next to Town Hall.

Provincetown's Carnival Week begins on Saturday, and is set to bring thousands of guests to town.

Morse said he'd reached out to officials as far away as Orleans to warn day-trippers to avoid Provincetown for the next day or two.

Morse says the last time the vacuum sewer was shut down was 2017, and before then in 2009.

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