Bay County Officials Prepare For Final Fix in Water Pipe Leak

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BAY COUNTY-- Bay County Utilities is continuing to work on a water pipe leak that burst last week at the Deerpoint Bridge dam.

Earlier repairs were unsuccessful, but they've received new parts and should be ready to start work Monday. The affected areas can expect some boil advisories.

Water boil advisories have continued for several weeks now for parts of Bay County including Lake Merial, Southport, Rivercamps, and Deane Bozeman school.

Many residents are worried if their water will ever be safe.

"It's hard to know when it's going to be okay, when we can drink and when we can't," affected resident Jill Sanders said.

Sanders isn't the only one who's struggling to stay updated on the boil notices.

"Then next thing you know a week later they said there was a boil notice up here in Lake Merial, and we had no idea, like it never got out there. So I've been drinking the water constantly," another affected resident, James Rollins, said.

Bay County officials say this should be the last time residents will be affected by this water line break.

"Once the fix is in, once we replace the joint, yes it will be a permanent fix," Bay Co. Director of Utility Services Paul Lackenmacher said.

To make sure this break is fixed properly, crews will begin digging a bigger hole. They'll take out an eight-foot section of pipe and replace it with a brand new one.

"We have to drain the pipe out before we actually cut it and after we shut the valves down we will begin some excavation," Lackenmacher said.

One measure to help stabilize the area is well pipes. They are used to pump water out of the area to avoid erosion. Lackenmacher says this break is on a critical line and crews will be working to complete this fix as quickly as possible.

"We have to work around being able to supply water and at the same time minimizing the inconvenience to the public," he said.

Bay County officials say the inconvenience should be minimal come Tuesday morning.