Pipes and valves were damaged during vandalism to the Mesachie Lake sewage system project the weekend of Feb. 22-23. (CVRD photo)

Attack on Cowichan Valley sewer project a first for regional district

Premeditated pickaxe vandalism on Mesachie Lake upgrade comes at undisclosed ‘substantial’ cost

The director for Electoral Area F (Cowichan Lake South/Skutz Falls) is “saddened and disappointed” to report to his constituents that “significant vandalism” over the weekend of Feb. 22-23 has added to the price tag of the Mesachie Lake Sewer Upgrade project.

“This was not a crime of opportunity or of someone acting on a whim,” director Ian Morrison wrote in a notice to residents of Honeymoon Bay and Mesachie Lake. “It was intentional and premeditated, and required tools and tenacity.”

Morrison said a pick or an axe was used to damage a section of the newly installed main and “a number of critical valves were dismantled or disassembled and rendered non-functional.”

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The director praised the diligence of the contractor in their respect for the community and for keeping their site tidy while undertaking the work but said the event has been “off-putting” for them.

The damage has been fixed but it cost extra money, or as Morrison said “a substantial and unnecessary cost”.

“The CVRD has never experienced vandalism to a community sewer or water upgrade project and I hope it never happens again,” Morrison said. “I think it is really important we all keep our eyes and ears open and be vigilant, while this or any other community service upgrade project is underway, and to ensure those responsible aren’t able to strike again.”

The Mesachie Lake sewer upgrade project has been in the works for two years and will expand capacity to provide Honeymoon Bay and Mesachie Lake and everyone in between with a modern sewer alternative to antiquated septic systems.


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