Rain, construction reveal drainage issues in Landrum

Published 3:25 pm Wednesday, October 25, 2017

LANDRUM – Monday’s rain may have averted a disaster in Landrum. While doing sidewalk repairs, workers discovered that some old pipes were cracking and a sewer drain was nearly covered up with layers of asphalt.  Landrum City Administrator Rich Caplan said water running under Rutherford Street was compromising the road. 

According to Caplan, El Chile Rojo and possibly the Landrum Antique Mall had some minor flooding on Monday and El Chile Rojo had to close early. Caplan explained the water came down the hill behind the stores and through the pipes underneath. With the tremendous amount of rain in only a few hours, the old cracked clay pipes and the broken sewer line couldn’t handle the volume.

“In a way it was fortuitous. It’s good to discover this now,” said Caplan who explained that, with the water washing under Rutherford Street, it could easily have become a sinkhole in the future.

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“Those clay pipes may be at least 50 years old,” Caplan said. He also explained that as Rutherford Street has been resurfaced many times, the asphalt built up until it partially blocked the sewer drain. With the blocked sewer and the broken sewer line, the water had nowhere to go but under the sidewalks and street.

Caplan said Spartanburg Water placed a metal patch over the broken sewer line and would fix it Tuesday night. City officials re-routed busses and trucks on Tuesday and met with SCDOT and Spartanburg Water to discuss necessary repairs.

“Our responsibility is the storm drain,” said Caplan. “It [the sidewalk repair] is going to take longer and cost a little more than we expected.”

The city has already received a bid from one contractor and is expecting to receive at least two more bids. Caplan said they hope to have the repairs completed in time for the Halloween stroll.