The Third Street sewer collapse will most likely cost the city of Portsmouth around $70,000. That’s the rough estimate offered by Portsmouth City Manager Derek K. Allen Monday night.
“I don’t have a final number yet, I’m estimating at around $70,000,” Allen told the Daily Times. “Two-hundred feet of 48-inch pipe, two manholes, and then the manholes had several pipes coming in that had to be repaired.”
Allen said the reason he took the action to contract it out was the emergency situation. A contract was awarded to Distel Construction Company to complete the work.
“The sewer was too deep,” Allen said. “It took a track-hoe and we didn’t have that and when it gets to a certain depth it’s dangerous for our crew because you want to get an experienced construction crew in there to do that.”
The problem arose when a sinkhole appeared after a heavy rain. Further examination showed an old brick manhole had collapsed. Workers climbed down into the hole that had been dug to try to find the extent of the collapse. After working down in the 48-inch brick sewer, it was discovered the next manhole had washed out as well.
More heavy equipment was brought in late last week to attempt to repair the collapse.
“When I talked to them last Friday, they thought they’d be done by Wednesday,” Allen said. “They were waiting on the second pre-cast manhole to come in.”