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Weber Basin Water Conservancy District official says problem leak should be fixed in December

By Tim Vandenack - | Nov 1, 2021

Tim Vandenack, Standard-Examiner

Water in the curb of Old Post Road from leaking in an underground pipe network managed by the Weber Basin Water Conservancy District in Ogden on Friday, Oct. 29, 2021. The facility sits off Old Post Road in southern Ogden.

OGDEN — Failed gaskets are behind a leak dating to April just outside a Weber Basin Water Conservancy District water treatment facility.

An official from the water provider say delays in getting the needed piping to remedy the situation have tied water conservancy district officials’ hands. The needed materials should arrive by mid-December, when the leak — a steady seep from below a roadway just outside the facility into adjacent Old Post Road in southern Ogden — should be fixed.

“It’s just a calamity of events that all came together,” Scott Paxman, assistant general manager of the conservancy district, said Monday.

The optics of a leak from an entity that has called all summer on the public to conserve water because of the ongoing drought isn’t lost on him. He understands the scorn some may direct to the entity. Adding to things, the water that’s being lost, 5 to 10 gallons a minute, is treated.

“This is drinking water. It’s treated drinking water. It’s the last thing we want to be wasting,” Paxman said. The water comes from the Weber River.

Ogden officials say they’ve fielded calls from the public about the leak, visible as runoff in the curb of Old Post Road north of 4800 South, and others who work in the area have also noticed.

Paxman said the 36-inch underground concrete piping that hauls the water is OK. “But the gaskets on the joints are all failing,” he said. The gaskets are the rubber material placed in the joints between pipe sections.

Conservancy district workers have tried to fix the problem, to no avail. Now, the planned fix calls for replacement of the problem section with about 800 feet of PVC piping. The problem is, the piping needed is hard to come by given the unusual size, 36 inches in diameter, and the scarcity of some of the materials used to make it, slowing repair efforts.

“Our crews are ready to jump right on it,” Paxman said. The required repair is complicated, but he said fixing the problem, when the needed materials arrive, shouldn’t impact the supply of water to the public.

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