A 30-inch concrete sanitary sewer line serving pretty much all of Chesterton
west of 15th Street—and the Porter Cove subdivision as well—has failed.
Town Engineer Mark O’Dell told the Chesterton Tribune today that a
collections crew, responding to a pair of reports late Thursday of sewage
backups, discovered a blockage in the line along West Morgan Ave. between
15th and 14th streets.
Woodruff & Sons of Michigan City was on the scene this morning—on an
emergency basis—saw-cutting the road in preparation for excavation, O’Dell
It’ll be a deep dig, Street Commissioner John Schnadenberg said: 15 feet.
In the meantime, however, motorists accustomed to using 15th Street will
have to find an alternate route, as 15th Street between Broadway and West
Porter Ave. has been closed to through-traffic for the duration,
Schnadenberg said. Residents and businesses in the affected area will still
O’Dell was hopeful that that the repair could be completed in three to four
Although unable immediately to say how old the 30-inch line is, O’Dell is
assuming the cause of the failure to be the deterioration of the concrete
pipe over time by hydrogen sulfide, otherwise known as sewer gas, produced
by the breakdown of human waste.
The 30-inch line is an important one, Schnadenberg said, “as everything from
the west converges” on it to flow east to the 48-inch monster line running
down Eighth Street and then to the wastewater treatment plant.
A vacuum truck has been on the scene “continuously pumping around the area”
to keep the flow from the west moving smoothly, Schnadenberg added.