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Alert: LBJ Sewer Ruptures for 2nd Time This Week

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Jan. 11, 2008 — The LBJ pump station force main sewer line has ruptured for the second time this week, the V.I. Waste Management Authority advised residents Thursday evening.
The bypass line, which is used to pump sewage over Long Reef, is being repaired, according to the WMA alert. As a result, the spilling sewage is flowing into an adjacent gut, leading into Christiansted Harbor rather than being pumped out over Long Reef as in previous breaks. To repair the bypass line, crews must first construct a coffer dam to control the tides around the impacted area, so they can then excavate and repair the underwater pipeline adjacent to the shoreline. A section of the existing 10-inch ductile iron line will be replaced with 12-inch PVC line.
Upon completion of the repairs to the bypass line, the flow to the LBJ Pump Station will be pumped out over Long Reef and the force main line will be drained to begin repair work on that line. Repairs to the impacted force main line are anticipated to take four to five days from the start of the repair work. To mitigate the impact of the sewer line leak, the surrounding area was graded to direct the flow away from the residential area, and it is disinfected on a regular basis.
The WMA reminds all residents with impacted immune systems to avoid the area during this time as the sewage may contain contaminants that will negatively impact one's health. Signs will be posted on the beach reminding persons to avoid the Long Reef and adjacent beach areas until the force main is back in service.
This is the second rupture affecting residents of LBJ Housing Community this week and the latest in a long string of such ruptures going back many years. Ductile iron pipe placed in the earth many decades ago has become porous and brittle from long exposure to saline groundwater.
For more information, please contact the Waste Management Authority Office of Communications Management at 712-4950.

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