Maintenance Committee: Water Leaks

Maintenance Staff eliminates a Mysterious Water Leak on Niguel Shores Drive. Many who frequent the trip to the beach bluff parking may have noticed a small stream of water in the gutter starting in early spring of 2016. At first, all dismissed it as just groundwater. Some investigation revealed that the water was originating in the storm drain.
Isn’t water supposed to flow into storm drains not out of storm drains? Where was all this water (about a gallon per minute, 24 hours a day) coming from? Many calls to the water district and fire hydrant bureaucracies yielded little information.
After significant numbers of requests from our maintenance staff, the South Coast Water District agreed to use one of their remotely controlled robots to photograph the inside of the storm drains to find where the water was entering the storm drains. About the same time our maintenance staff noticed a wet area along the PCH, near our bridge that overpasses the highway. Finally, the SCWD used more sensitive sensors to find a leak in the pipes outside our water meters; therefore, the leak did not show up on their metered leak detection system. Slowly the water flowing from the storm drain decreased to a trickle and then stopped. A tough maintenance problem finally solved!
Lessons learned:
■ Our community benefits greatly from a vigilant maintenance staff.
■ Their ability to work with the local utilities and city staff is invaluable.
■ Persistence pays off.
—Jerry Allen

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