Raw sewage spewed into Halifax Harbour yesterday.

Multiple power failures and an unknown mechanical failure at the Halifax Wastewater Treatment Facility shut it down.

“We’re not sure what happened at this point,” said James Campbell, communications manager with the Harbour Solutions Project.


“What that means is the Halifax Wastewater Treatment Facility is not processing sewage right now, so untreated wastewater is going into the harbour on the Halifax side.”

But facilities in Dartmouth, Eastern Passage and Mill Cove are functioning properly.

He said they believe early morning power outages might have contributed to the problem.

The two southbound lanes of Upper Water Street were closed down yesterday to help with the repairs at the plant.

It’s expected the work will take about three days.

There are no beaches to close in January, but Campbell is advising swimmers to stay out of the harbour until the problem is fixed.

“There are hardy souls who do polar bear swims and things like that we’re not aware of, so we’d rather err on the side of caution and tell people not to swim in the harbour.”