Advisory lifted from Tonganoxie Creek
The city's broken sewer line now has a temporary fix.
Last Wednesday, workers from Meadows Construction spent most of the day installing a 2-inch PVC pipe from a manhole near the tennis courts in Chieftain Park. The pipe runs to a manhole near the old creamery on First Street.
An advisory for people and pets to stay away from Tonganoxie Creek was lifted Tuesday after KDHE completed tests on water samples taken Monday morning, said Kathy Bard, assistant city administrator.
On March 22, city workers who went out to clean debris from Tonganoxie Creek, just behind Chieftain Park, discovered that a sewer line spanning the creek had broken and was spilling raw sewage into the creek.
The line serves the North Star subdivision, as well as the public restrooms at Chieftain Park, said Tonganoxie City Administrator Shane Krull.
As soon as the break was found, city officials alerted the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. The next day, KDHE officials inspected the site and took water samples.
Krull said the 8-inch iron pipe that broke was covered with a concrete structure that spanned the bridge. It's likely, Krull said, the break came when heavy mid-March rains washed trees and other debris into the structure.
Sharon Watson, KDHE spokesperson, said that because the break was accidental, KDHE does not plan to fine the city.
Krull said the city's engineer is working on two plans for a permanent repair of the line. One would be an aerial crossing similar to the original structure. Another possibility would be to install a small pump station so the waste would be forced through a line below the creek and pushed up to the existing manhole near the creamery.
At this point, Krull has no cost estimates on the work, but said the city is looking into pursuing a state grant to pay for a portion of it.
Krull said he didn't expect the line to be permanently repaired until three to four months from now.