Collapsing Sewer Lines

By: Gary Smollen Email
By: Gary Smollen Email

People who live on Council Bluff's west end are getting used to the view of sewer pipes and big holes. Crews have been out fixing collapsed lines all over the area. Twice within a block of Pat Lindhorst's home.

Pat Lindhorst says, “They've just been, to my knowledge, bouncing all over to try and keep everybody happy I think and I really do feel sorry for them.”

The bouncing around is actually running from one collapsed line to another. The pictures would be funny except someone has to pay the bill for all of the repairs. Right now the total sits at $4.6 million but it is rising.

Matt Cox says, “Those are really temporary repairs because conditions are not conductive to permanent repairs. We're just patching it back together getting it to where we can restore service and ultimately we're planning to come back and replace it permanently.”

Making repairs now is like swimming upstream; crews dig a hole, pump out the ground water and go to work. but the work is constantly being interrupted by seeping water. The worst part of it is the worst is yet to come.

Matt Cox says, “We think probably as the water starts to come down we'll see other ones develop because they're almost floating now.”

There might be even more problems down the road. As fall turns into winter and the ground freezes there could be even more pressure on the sewer lines and more breaks.

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