Water from a broken pipe glistens in the evening sun at James Chabot park May 26. Photo by Nikki Fredrikson

Waterpipe break causes temporary closures at James Chabot

Broken pipe leads to temporary, minor flooding at popular local park

A water line break Friday evening prompted officials to shut off the water at James Chabot park.

Visitors to the park May 26 may have noticed water bubbling from underground, causing minor flooding on the grass and sidewalk in front of the washrooms. Washrooms were closed over the weekend due to the break.

The provincial park in Athalmer is operated by EK Parks Ltd. Maintenance manager Matt Glanfield spoke Monday morning to The Echo, while on site to repair the damage.

“I’m looking at the hole right now,” said Glanfield. “We’re just doing a quick repair and it should be up and running shortly.”

They are unsure what caused the break. However, Glanfield expressed gratitude to the District of Invermere staff who came down Friday evening to shut off the water when alerted by a resident of the situation and have been “really good” to work with on the matter.

EK Parks operations manager Jenna Gyurkovits added they are very grateful for the District’s attention to the break.

“It saved the lawn, so we are very appreciative,” said Gyurkovits.

EK Parks Ltd., which monitors more than a dozen parks, has someone answering calls on the main phone line seven days a week until 6 p.m. Glanfield says if park users notice a concern like that during business hours, to phone them at 250-422-3003. If it is after-hours, feel free to call Mr. Glanfield at 250-432-9841.

EK Parks Ltd. have noticed some concerns at James Chabot beach over the last few years, including grafitti, vandalizing signs, cutting ropes for buoys and more. Glanfield said one of the big concerns they see on a regular basis is people bringing their dogs to the beach.

“We’re trying to see if we can work out an area to have dogs,” said Glanfield. “But right now, they can only come in and go down the path to the boardwalk at the end; they are not allowed on the grass.”

Glanfield says James Chabot has one of the higher rates of damage out of their parks because it is a dayuse area, which means there is not on-site monitoring by staff.

“We do the repairs, but it is being repaired with taxpayer money,” he emphasizes.

Another issue they see often is motorized boats crossing the bouy lines to park at the beach. Not only are there signs indicating no motorized boats, but the bouyed area is there for swimmer’s safety.

“Kids are in the water; we don’t want boats with motors coming through.”