A broken underground pipe near Howard County's Little Patuxent Water Reclamation Plant in Savage led to an overflow of about 10,000 gallons of sewage before the leak was stemmed Thursday morning, county officials said.
The overflow, which escaped through a cracked pipe in a wooded area along Guilford Road, east of Route 1 at Carter Road, was discovered about 8:15 a.m.
The leaked sewage was in a "high strength solid" state, meaning that it had already been dehydrated, or "thickened," according to Howard County Bureau of Utilities Deputy Chief Jeff Welty.
Sewage that made it up to the surface has likely all been washed away down the Little Patuxent River, officials said.
Welty said repairs to the pipe would be finished by Friday. Workers will spread lime on any waste still on the ground to stabilize pathogens, he said.
No homes in the area have had their water shut off because of repairs, and repair work wouldn't have an impact on local traffic, according to Welty. He predicted the pipe would be in service again by Friday afternoon.
In a press release, Howard County Health Department officials reminded the public to stay away from any affected areas, though due to the isolated location of the pipe, they said public contact was unlikely.