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L-EWA discusses leak in clearwell
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The board members of Lugoff-Elgin Water Authority (L-EWA) gathered to discuss plans for a clearwell repair and valve installation June 7.

Since last year, there has been a discussion about a 500,000 gallon clearwell that has been leaking at L-EWA’s water plant. There is a 250,000 gallon clearwell at the plant as well. Both tanks are used to store treated, filtered water. 

Getting generators to keep the plant operational was the first step to fixing the repair.

“Now that we have the generation ability, we can go ahead and start working on this,” L-EWA General Manager Mike Hancock said.

While using a blue print of the water plant, L-EWA Superintendent of Water Treatment Randy Bowers went on to explain to the board the procedure for repairing the leak.

“There are 750,000 gallons that have to be taken out of service to do the clearwell repair. That only gives us about eight hours of reliable water, but with the generators in place we are prepared to go forward with the repair,” Bowers said.

Bowers went on to explain that in 2007, a 1.1 billion gallon concrete tank was built. This specific tank doesn’t corrode or leak and it will be relied on during the repair.  Although the two clearwells will be out of service, valves will be installed so in the future, both won’t have to be down at the same time for any reason. The actual repair could take 30 days to 120 days.

Hancock added that this is a two-phase operation. First, the valve installation must be taken care. The clearwell will then be drained and examined to fix the leak.

“We are constantly looking for ways to maintain the plant and efficiency,” Hancock said.

In other business:

• L-EWA was considering not accepting cash and allowing customers to have other options of paying their bills. Since L-EWA is a public company, cash must be accepted for debts. “Although it’s a good idea, we can’t do it,” Hancock said.

• The drought conditions have improved due to recent rainfall.

• Vice President Clyde Smith and board member Joel Schmalzel proposed starting a scholarship program for Lugoff-Elgin High School. L-EWA board members agreed and the account will be opened with unbudgeted money the water authority received.

• A memorial resolution will be signed for the late Vince Halter, former chairman of the L-EWA board, next month.