Humansdorp Sewer Project in Utter Disarray

A badly planned and botched construction job has left the Arcadia residents of Humansdorp with no road access into Meyer Street from Jeggels, Petersen and Julies Streets.

Cllr Desmond Peterson shows where raw sewage is flowing in Arcadia

Cllr Desmond Peterson shows where raw sewage is flowing in Arcadia

This is a huge project and it was totally necessary to enlarge the Kruisfontein Waste Water Treatment Works (R 53,389,652 budget).

The construction of the western outfall sewer and associated works with a budget of R 8,191,369 by a contractor named RK Sauer Construction must be investigated.

The project was awarded to the contractor on 24 June 2014. It was signed off by a Kouga Municipal official and there is apparently no retention on the project to ensure that any teething problems, unfinished work or surprise consequences can be rectified before final payment.

Kouga officials have turned a blind eye on a municipal project, saying they have signed off on the project, which means any chance on rectification locally is at a stalemate situation.

Options for immediate investigations by the funders of the Municipal Infrastructure Grant projects for Kouga will be followed up through our local Member of Parliament, Elza van Lingen.

Extremely large sewer “manholes” of about two meters in diameter have mushroomed all over the area causing serious problems in various areas.

They have been constructed across the valley in Petersen Street and then up Meyer Street, some quite high above the ground and others more or less level with the street or sidewalk levels.

The large manholes above the valley in Petersen Street have according to the local residents caused a flow of raw sewerage into the stream at the bottom of the valley.

This needs to be investigated to determine if it is a fault of the new system or if there is still a raw sewerage leak into the stream.

Petersen, Julies and Jeggels Streets, which are down-streets into Meyer Street, have very bad sewerage spills from higher up streets.

These raw sewerage spills, running through yards of residents, have not been addressed or resolved by this project.  At the bottom corner of Petersen and Meyer Streets a gabion wall has been built on ground level and not on the edge of the hill with the top of the construction at street level.

This “wall” has now become a dam for raw sewerage running down Petersen Street.  There is also a particularly bad spill at the corner of Lippert and Petersen Streets (No. 395) where the entire yard is saturated with either raw sewerage or storm water making access to the house a nightmare.

In Meyer Street several extremely large manholes have been constructed in an inexplicable “line” with some infringing into the street itself and not just the street reserve.

Meyer Street has been left inaccessible to the residents for vehicles, which includes access for ambulances and police vehicles.  The contractor has not levelled the road and the deep tracts (some knee-deep) of construction machinery have been left unattended.

Its time for change. Raw sewage flows in the streets of Arcadia.

Its time for change. Raw sewage flows in the streets of Arcadia.

The fact that some of these large “manholes” in Meyer Street obstruct road access is a huge problem and some solution will have to be found to secure road access and safety.

Some of the minor line manholes are still leaking and spilling raw sewerage in Meyer Street and the management of these is obstructed by the inaccessibility of Meyer Street.

At the corner of Meyer and Jeggels Streets a truckload of soil was dumped, but never flattened to at least fill the tracks.

At this same corner a construction vehicle broke the concrete lid of an existing minor manhole and was just left unattended and not reported.  It was at this particular manhole where a little girl has nearly drowned before.

Little children are playing in the streets and the raw sewerage spills are a real health threat to them and their families.

Councillor Desmond Petersen

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