Clallam Bay running water service restored after bypass

PUD authorizes emergency repairs

PORT ANGELES — Clallam Bay customers now have running water after a bypass pipeline was constructed around a massive landslide.

Clallam Bay was back in service on Tuesday with a boil-water order after the pipeline was finished, flushed, disinfected and samples were submitted to a lab for testing.

The boil-water order is expected to be lifted today if the lab finds that all is well, said Nicole Hartman, PUD communications manager.

A series of storms hit the North Olympic Peninsula on Nov. 15, causing major flooding and landslides throughout the Pacific Northwest, including the West End.

A massive landslide between Sekiu and Clallam Bay broke a pipeline, and the Hoko pump station was flooded. Water was cut off to Sekiu until the PUD rerouted water from the Clallam Bay reservoir, which later ran out of water.

The pump station was back online on Thursday, and pipeline construction began Saturday at milepost 15.8 along state Highway 112 and stretched to the site of a second smaller slide at milepost 16.3.

“There is slack in the bypass pipe to account for slide movement,” Hartman posted online on the PUD website.

“Sections of the pipe are able to be removed to allow WSDOT (Washington State Department of Transportation) to conduct clearing without residents losing service as long as the (Clallam Bay) reservoir is kept full,” she said.

Clallam County Public Utility District commissioners on Monday approved the repair of the pump station and the construction of the bypass water line as emergencies to allow the work to be done without having to go out for formal bids.

The cost of the construction of the pipe is estimated at $80,000, with a breakdown of $30,000 for a contractor, $35,000 for materials, $8,000 for an electrical contractor and $7,000 for PUD crew overtime pay.

“In these situations, we need to get a contractor going immediately and also get the materials they need for construction ordered and delivered, said Tom Martin, the water and wastewater systems manager for the PUD.

“This emergency declaration will allow us to expedite the process,” he added.

Clallam PUD selected Jacobs Excavating to do the reconstruction of the pipeline.

“They were the emergency response contractor on another break that we had last winter,” Martin said.

Martin told of the events last week.

“When the storms hit, we had some alerts go off that indicated that there were electrical problems with the Hoko Pump Station,” he said.

“Soon thereafter, we had a high-water alarm, and soon after that, all data communications were lost.

“We had two things going on: We had a main break from the landslide, and the pump station was flooded … but the check valve at the pump station kept the Clallam Bay reservoir from draining immediately,” Martin said.

The reservoir drained later, and Clallam Bay customers lost running water.

Flooding in the Hoko pump station required some of the pumps to be replaced, but the landslides prevented vehicles from accessing the pump station until Wednesday.

The PUD partnered with many local retailers along with the Washington State National Guard and local volunteer pilots to deliver water to Seiku and Clallam Bay water customers.

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Reporter Ken Park can be reached at [email protected].

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