Failed sewer pipe could be costly to fix

Wastewater line spews water on Belvista Place and Sooke Road

Repairs to a broken pipe that leaked wastewater onto Belvista Place and Sooke Road on Friday could be costly to repair, District of Sooke officials say.

The leak was discovered by a nearby resident at about 10 a.m. after a small pressure line broke, said Teresa Sullivan, the district’s chief administrative officer.

Once the leak was discovered, the wastewater was directed into a nearby sewer manhole to protect the environment.

The 10-inch pipe sends wastewater from the Belvista pump station to the town’s wastewater treatment plant. The pipe is made of thick plastic and buried six to eight feet below the street.

Repair to the pipe, which broke at the joins between two pipes, became complicated when a replacement part could not be found, Sullivan said.

The section of the pipe was located late Friday afternoon and repairs began Saturday morning. The site was secured overnight.

The pipes had to be drained to almost a trickle before the 10-year-old pipe could be fitted with the new part.

Three hydrovac trucks were used to suck the raw sewage out of the pipes and eight dump trucks hauled more than 20 loads of raw sewage away to be safely disposed.

“It was not an easy problem to fix,” said acting mayor Rick Kasper.

Kasper said the repair bill could be costly.

The district is still calculating the costs of the repair and EPCOR is helping to pull the financial information together, said Sullivan, adding the information will be released when available.

Kasper said the work is outside the district’s contract with EPCOR, which operates the municipality’s wastewater system.

“[EPCOR’s] contract deals specifically with the operational side of things. The district is responsible for anything below ground,” he said.

“It’s a rare occurrence [the pipe breaking] that these things happen.”

No residents were evacuated due to the pipe break.

Officials took samples of water from a nearby drainage creek that discharges into the Sooke basin to determine fecal coliform counts.

editor@sookenewsmirror.com