On April 27, I received a call from my neighbor, an elderly, disabled woman, on a limited fixed income, asking for help. She explained that there was water coming from the ground at the end of her driveway and that the leak had been there since the (PCI) Pacific Civil Infrastructure crew, building the Carlsborg Sewer, had finished their work weeks before.
She explained that she had contacted Ross Tyler, P.E. County Engineer Clallam County Road Department about the leak. Mr. Tyler and PCI crew made an attempt to stop the leak but claimed they couldn’t find the source and just left it to continue to leak for weeks.
I went to her home and observed running water coming from the ground where PCI had been working. I went to her well house and shut it down. BEHOLD, source of leak found. I emailed Mr. Tyler, Mark Ozias and other county officials that evening explaining what I had found in hopes of resolving the issue.
On Friday April 28th at 8:09 AM, I received a return email from Mr. Tyler where he offers excuses and BLAMED the VICTIM;
“Thanks for the info. To this point no one else, including Ms. Carson, has been able to determine the origin, or what is being served by the broken water line which appears to be very old. Attempts have been made to cap it however the pipe is so rotten that all attempts have secured limited success to this point.
A “call before you dig” locate of utilities was effected by the Contractor before any work began. If private utilities are located within the area that is anticipated to be disturbed then it is incumbent on those private utilities to mark their own lines as the “one call “ service has no way of knowing that they exist. If a private utility that has not been marked is damaged then the cost of repair is born by the utility and not the Contractor.
Since the line has been severed and capped it appears that your assumption that this is a domestic line that serves Ms. Carson’s home is incorrect. The line has been severed for some time now and Ms. Carson has not indicated that her domestic water supply has ceased during this period. However since no one seems to know where this water line originates it is our intent to get it securely capped to limit future adverse effects to Ms. Carson, and the road.”
Have a great weekend
Ross Tyler, P.E.
Clallam County Road Department
WRONG, Mr. Tyler. I called Mr. Tyler on the 28th and explained what I had found, that it was her domestic water line that had been broken. Mr. Tyler was contentious about resolving the issue or paying for my neighbor’s utility bill increase caused by allowing the leak to continue and her well pump to run non-stop. I offered to get a shovel and dig up the pipe myself. Mr. Tyler agreed and said he would have a county inspector there, but that never happened.
I went home for my shovel and upon my return met a crew from PCI at her driveway. I shut down her well and stopped the leak. We dug up the pipe, found the break; PCI used a power saw to cut the “rotten” line and capped it, AN EASY FIX Mr. Tyler. The leak was from a pipe that joined the main water line to her home so capping it didn’t affect her domestic water supply.
At 12:31 PM, I emailed Mr. Tyler to inform him the leak was capped. In his return email, he again BLAMES the VICTIM;
“Just for your general information, the contractor contacted the one-call utility locate service and all the utilities that were identified to the one-call service were located before the contractor began the excavation. It is incumbent on private utilities to notify the one-call service of the location of their utilities. In all cases where private utilities have not identified their utility locations to the one-call service, and are impacted by construction activities, all costs associated with the damage and repair of that utility are born by the owner of the utility.”
Thanks PCI for fixing the leak. SHAME on Ross Tyler and Clallam County for SHIRKING RESPONSIBILITY and BLAMING an ELDERLY, DISABLED WOMAN.
UPDATE TO COUNTY SHIRKS RESPONSIBILITY;
On Friday April 28th, 2017 I received a call from Commissioner Johnson asking that my neighbor write a letter to PUD explaining the issue with her power bill and asking PUD to assist the Commissioners and Mr. Tyler in resolving her increased power bill as the result of the broken water line caused by county sewer construction. The letter to PUD was mailed on Sunday, April 30th, 2017.
On May 1, 2017 I received an email from Commissioner Ozias wherein he stated; “I will continue to work with staff and the other Commissioners as necessary to achieve a positive conclusion to the problem.”(Neighbor’s name omitted for her privacy). I relied to Mr. Ozias and explained; “Her PUD power bill from March 14th through April 10th, during the “leak” was $142.16 after her Senior/Disabled discount was applied. She made her budgeted payment of $45.00 leaving a balance forward of $97.16. A simple check for the $97.16 balance would go a very long way for her.”
At this point it is apparent that the county has placed even more burden on my Elderly Disabled neighbor to write a letter to PUD then sit and wait as the County continues to “Shirk Responsibility” and drag their feet to “achieve a positive conclusion” for my neighbor.