LABELLE, FL. -- Under a recent grant, the Port LaBelle Utility System is inspecting and cleaning all sewer lines in Port LaBelle in Hendry county including Unit 4 (Eucalyptus Village), Unit 5 (Laurel Oak Village), Country Walk, and the Port Labelle Villas in Glades county. All other Port LaBelle communities have septic tanks and do not have sewer lines.
National Water Main Cleaning Co. from New Jersey won the lowest bid to suck out sand and debris from the sewer mains which are about 10 feet underground, and make a video inspection of all the pipes to see if there is damage along the main line or ground water intrusion.
The company forces water into the 8 inch sewer lines between manholes at about 500 psi to scour the pipes and sucks the muck out into a giant tank on their truck, then sends a video camera through the pipes to see where ground water is leaking into the pipes.
Watching the operator today, it was noticed in the Laurel Oaks subdivision many breaks in the pipe where ground water was leaking in, as well as "watermarks" showing where sand and silt had been laying on about 25% of the bottom of the sewer pipes. (Right: photo of live video monitor)
Port LaBelle Utilities says several people have called complaining of water in their bathroom after the inspections. Supposedly the 500 psi water scouring the pipe built up pressure in the lateral lines serving the residences and shot water out of the toilet, in one case, hitting the bathroom ceiling.