UPDATE: City officials said crews repaired the sewage line in Republic that broke over the weekend. After a temporary fix was put into place, crews put in a permanent line on Wednesday.
An ORV trail to a park had washed out above the line and ruptured the sewage line.
REPUBLIC, Wash. --- A washout on a trail in Republic broke a sewage line over the weekend.
The ORV trail that washed out used to be a rail line, according city officials.
“In the old days, we had gold mines just everywhere in Republic,” Mayor Elbert Koontz explained. “They just put a whole bunch of dirt in there, then ran a railroad over it.”
He said that was about 100 years ago, but nowadays, the rail line is an ORV trail to a park.
“The whole thing washed down the canyon,” Koontz said. “I talked with the kid who watched it and he said ‘Oh my god, listen to the streets crack,’ and then the streets just disappeared.
According to the mayor, the washout tore a sewer line in half.
“Luckily, most of what’s coming out of there is [water] runoff,” he said. “Whatever it is, it’s minimal. We don’t have a health scare and there is nothing wrong with the water system.”
The mayor estimated there was about 1000 yards of material that was swept away by the washout, and expected all the repairs to be done by Tuesday.
Crews were filling the chasm with big rocks – “the size of Volkswagens,” according to the mayor – that they hope will be more stable than the previous filler in the mine, dirt.
“We had a lot of overtime this weekend,” he said. “It was just a force of nature that this happened.”