Coffer dam to be repaired

Cape Breton Post
Wed., July 30, 2003

Sydney - repairs to a broken coffer dam controlling water levels at the Sydney tar ponds will begin soon.

Frank Potter, director of operations for the province's Sydney Tar Ponds Agency, said a worn out seal has allowed water from the site's south pond to seep out the bottom of the coffer dam for the past three weeks. "We can't maintain a steady level."

The structure was built around 1990 to help provide enough water to cover sediment in the south pond. In recent weeks, the level has dropped by about one and a half feet and has resulted in a more exposed shoreline.

Potter said crews from Sydney Environmental Resources Limited will put a fixed barrier at the coffer dam in the next few days and will make repairs during low tide. The process,which does not require the sediment to be dug up, was reviewed by the Department of Environment, said Potter. "There's no real impact."

The total project is expected to cost about $10,000.