Columbus Water Works repairing sewer at Lakebottom Park

The Columbus Water Works has begun replacement of a old sewer line at Lakebottom Park near Weracoba Creek.

The spot, at Cherokee Avenue across from Columbus High School, was the site of a sewage spill Saturday during a heavy rain. More than 111,000 gallons of sewage spilled into Weracoba Creek on Saturday afternoon. The work has 17th Street at the park blocked.

“We have one of the old sewer line where the flow was a little obstructed, and when high water hits it makes it worse,” Water Works Senior Vice President Jim Patterson said Tuesday. “What we have done is set up a pump and are pumping water out of the manhole and into a newer parrell line.”

That will enable workers to rebuild the crumbling line, Patterson said.

The work was scheduled for later this year, but was expedited after last week’s drainage problems. It should take about two weeks to complete.

The Weracoba Creek sewage spill was one of four the Water Works has had to report to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Environmental Protection Division.

The largest of the spills occurred March 16 along the Chattahoochee Riverwalk between Rigdon Park and the Water Works’ sewage treatment facility. More than 1.7 million gallons spilled into the river when high waters knocked an above gound manhole cover loose.

There were two smaller spills into Lake Oliver in Green Island Hills. One occurred March 16 and the other happened Saturday.

Heavy rains of more than 5 inches both days were blamed for overloading the system, Water Works officials said.