BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - For years, standing water has been a problem on eastbound Highway 90 in Biloxi near Chalmers Avenue. The Mississippi Department of Transportation installed a drain that was supposed to help, but something recently went wrong and the water returned.
Ground water is to blame for the soggy section of beachfront highway.
"Unfortunately, we can't do anything about ground water, but we can try to get rid of it," said MDOT engineer Steven Parker.
That's apparently easier said than done.
MDOT installed a so-called French drain some six months ago, which was supposed to direct all the water to a nearby storm water drain.
"Our main goal is to keep it below the concrete level. There's concrete below this asphalt. If we can keep the water below the concrete and get it to that inlet, we should be in good shape," said Parker.
There was some thought initially that all the water might be coming from a broken city water line, but they tested the water and found it contained no chlorine. It is simply ground water which rises to the top.
While some water continues to flow through the drain like it's supposed to, a clog in the line, or some other problem, is once again letting water leach onto the roadway.
"We feel we have the drain there, and we're getting water in the drain. It's just not getting to the inlet we need to," said Parker.
Digging out around the drain is the first step in trying to diagnose the soggy seep. Then, make sure that drain is functioning as it should.
"Get it cleaned out. See what the water is doing when it's cleaned out. Then we can evaluate it from there: if we need to put more line in, if we need to raise it. Just what we need to do from there," said Parker.
MDOT wrapped up the day Wednesday by unclogging and patching the drain pipe. Crews will return later to replace the drain with a new one. If the drain doesn't work, the Parker says they may have to explore other possible remedies.