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Persistent leak on Colonial Heights road proving tricky for drivers

Persistent leak on Colonial Heights road proving tricky for drivers
Posted at 5:41 PM, Jul 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-23 17:41:09-04

COLONIAL HEIGHTS, Va. -- A constant leak on Colonial Heights Road is creating challenges for drivers in the area.

"It's very dangerous," Wilson Abernathy, who rides his motorcycle through the area, said.

The leak has more than just drivers concerned.

"Biggest concern is that something's going to wash out," Bradley Stuller, who owns a business right behind the water leak, said.

For the last two years, the pesky water leak seems to never go away and it has grown into a nagging concern for those in the area.

"The concern is traffic being a main artery, with all the cars coming through, especially now that there's moss growing, it's an area of concern," Stuller said.

While the city dug up part of the street in 2019 to try and find the leak, two years later, it is still a problem for those who use the road.

"When pulling out, that's when it's the worst because you're accelerating, that's when you're slipping and sliding," Stuller said.

Wilson Abernathy, an avid motorcyclist, is aware of the problems that the leak causes for him when he's on the road.

"It is very dangerous, so I will change lanes if I'm coming across the bridge coming into Colonial Heights. I will change lanes. If I can't get over, I will stop before I get here," Abernathy said.

And now, a new problem has arisen due to the water: a green algae substance.

"It's got to be slick," Abernathy said. "The green is growing over into the center lane where I had never noticed that before, but it's definitely growing."

CBS6 reached out to the City of Colonial Heights to learn more about what is being done about the issue.

"The water table is so high, it's actually encroaching into the pavement," Todd Flippen, the director of public works, said.

Crews said that there is a constant flow of water in a nearby drain and are also considered about the growth of the algae.

"We've notified our environmental team and they're going to take a look and see particularly what's going on in that case," Flippen said.

For the time being, the wet pavement and ground will keep the city from taking another shot at digging up the road.

"The plan is once the area dries up and the water table lowers, we're going to look at it, open up the area and try to address the situation to where the water does not bubble up to the pavement," Flippen said.

Flippen said that the water on the road isn't clean water from a burst pipe and said that if the water doesn't dry up before winter, they will go ahead and address the situation to prevent a freezing problem.

He said one solution to the problem would be the use of pipes to help move the water towards the sewer system.