Mediation settles costs of sewage pipe leak

TOWN 'N COUNTRY — Hillsborough will get $350,000 through a settlement with the manufacturers and installers of piping that leaked and sent millions of gallons of raw sewage into Sweetwater Creek in 2008.

County attorney Rob Brazel mediated the settlement with Spectrum Underground, North American Pipe and Sigma Corp. The County Commission unanimously approved it at its meeting Wednesday.

"We got this worked out in mediation, which took the better part of a day," Brazel said.

In July 2008, Spectrum finished installing 2,600 feet of pipe near Hanley Road and Comanche Avenue. The $700,000 project replaced aging ductile iron pipe with PVC. A couple of months later, the line broke. It was repaired, but eventually broke a total of four times within seven months, sending the untreated sewage into nearby Sweetwater Creek, which flows into Tampa Bay.

The county paid neighboring Sweetwater Farms $33,000 for lost crops and ultimately replaced 750 feet of the new piping with a special coated ductile iron pipe at a cost of $300,000, said Bill Bozeman, a project manager for the county. The rest of the line will be replaced as money becomes available.

Brazel said some money from the agreement will help cover pipe costs to repair and replace more of that line.

Jared Leone, Times staff writer

Mediation settles costs of sewage pipe leak 10/21/10 [Last modified: Thursday, October 21, 2010 5:30am]

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