HOLLYWOOD (CBSMiami) – City officials reopened Taft Street early Wednesday evening to traffic as the cleanup continues in the wake of that nasty sewage spill last week.
Official say mitigation work in the area of Taft Street and North 31st Road, as well as the C-10 canal system will resume on Friday
The sewer main break spewed millions of gallons of raw sewage into yards, streets, and a local canal and residents have been airing their concerns at a series of meetings this week.
“I got a 5-month-old and an 11 year old I wouldn’t dare take them back to that house until I know it’s safe personally,” said Darryl Logan, who is staying in a hotel with his family, paid for by the city. “I would dare not have Thanksgiving inside my house because when I turn the air conditioner on it smells just like what it was outside.”
As part of the cleanup effort, crews are sanitizing yards and outbuildings of more than 2 dozen homes along North 31 Road where for two days, millions of raw sewage spewed from a ruptured 48-inch sewage pipe which burst Wednesday Nov. 16th.
The cleanup work includes raking, picking-up debris and pressure cleaning lawns, fences, driveways, sidewalks and other affected areas. Crews are using a light chlorine solution that is not harmful to landscaping to conduct the disinfection.
Water from the pressure cleaning work is being collected by vacuum trucks.
The City continues to assist those homeowners who decided to stay in a hotel until the cleanup is complete. Boat crews continue to remove debris and dead fish from the canals. The city has placed notices on the doors of hundreds of homes near the canal warning them to not fish, swim or wade in the canal.
Roadway repairs are nearing completion, but Taft Street between North 31 Road and the east side driveway of the YMCA remains closed. People can access the Joseph Meyerhoff Senior Center and nearby businesses from the east (Johnson to North 26 Avenue, north on 26 Avenue to Taft Street and then west on Taft Street).
The Greater Hollywood YMCA is now set to reopen on Monday, November 28. YMCA staff, contractors, and cleanup crews are ensuring the grounds are completely cleaned and the pool area sanitized, including all plumbing that connects the pool to the pool pump and salt treatment system. The YMCA grounds have been raked and pressure washed, and all debris removed. All YMCA Child Care programs have been relocated to City facilities for this week.
Pressure cleaning and disinfecting of the City of Hollywood’s Rotary Park is underway, but the park will remain closed until further notice.
The sewer main that broke is the primary line connecting west Hollywood, eastern Pembroke Pines and parts of southern Broward County to the Southern Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant in Hollywood.
The Broward County Health Department said the spill did not affect drinking water.
Hollywood is likely to face fines from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for piping the raw sewage from the rupture point into the canal behind Rotary Park and allowing spillover to go into a storm drain that empties into the same canal.
As for the cost of cleanup and repairs, Peter Bober, the city’s mayor, told CBS 4’s Carey Codd it will easily be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
City crews are hoping all clean-up and road repairs are done by Thanksgiving but there are no guarantees.
The City will hold another meeting for concerned residents on Tuesday, November 29, at Hollywood City Hall, Room 219 (City Commission chambers) at 7:00 p.m. This meeting will be for all residents who live along the C-10 canal or adjacent finger canals. Residents seeking information should call the information line at (954) 921-3046.