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Bureau of Environmental Services says spill may have been occurring for several weeks in Portland.

COURTESY PHOTO - Work crews posted this sign warning locals of the sewage spill on Northeast Greeley Avenue.A clogged manhole overflowed in Portland, sending at least 1,500 gallons of sewage into the area of Greeley Forest Garden, officials say.

Bureau of Environmental Services crews cleared the blockage on Northeast Greeley Avenue around 6 p.m. on Friday, March 29, according to a news release.

The sewage leaked primarily into the bike path on Greeley and the surrounding area, before flowing to storm drains that feed into the city's wastewater treatment plant.

"Crews estimate the sewage was contained within a small area. No creeks or other water body were affected," officials say. "The public is advised to obey warning signs that have been posted around the release."

Crews say there's a possibility this sewage spill has been ongoing for several weeks, but wasn't reported until Friday. Residents living in the transient camp at Greely Forest non-profit garden apparently told work crews that overflows have happened before.

BES didn't specify what sort of debris clogged the manhole, but the bureau says the common causes are grease, tree roots and garbage.

"Environmental Services advises the public not to flush anything other than waste and toilet paper, and to not put anything down storm drains, which are intended for rainfall only," according to a news release.

This spill is not related to the Big Pipe project which prevented most combined sewer overflows that were previously triggered by heavy rains.

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