An ongoing leak at the Midnight Sun Complex (MSC) pool forced the Town of Inuvik to bring in a leak detection specialist last weekend and required closing the pool for three days.

A worker clears space in the Midnight Sun Complex parking lot to collect runoff from the pool, which has been leaking for months. Stewart Burnett/NNSL photo

“Certain areas are difficult to get at,” said senior administrative officer Grant Hood, referring to the fact the pool would have to be drained for the specialist to determine the cause of the leak. “This leak detection person, they have the tools and equipment to help us pinpoint where the water could be coming out.”

The pool has been leaking for more than a month, which has caused flooding and slippery conditions in the MSC’s parking lot. Recently, the town created a snow berm to catch water leaking out of the pool so some of the parking lot could remain in use.

“The warm weather we’re getting isn’t helping because the water isn’t freezing,” said Hood about the water that has escaped to the outside.

He said maintenance staff have made some fixes to the pool since the problem emerged, slowing down the leak considerably, but the issue has gone on and required professional advice.

“We just don’t have the expertise at this point,” said Hood.

This leak is not in connection to a previous leak this past summer that saw water escaping into the squash court. That one is thought to be solved. This leak is underneath the pool in an area that is difficult to access.

Hood estimated the final bill for the specialist will be $5,000 or $6,000, which will come out of the town’s annual maintenance budget for either the pool or recreation complex.

“It’s money that is well spent,” said Hood. “We really don’t have a choice in some of these matters. You have to spend the money.”

The town budgets $50,000 per year for repairs and maintenance on the pool.

On Monday, Hood said it appeared that the specialist had identified the problem, but he was waiting for a final report as to what can be done to fix the leak. Once that came in, the town could determine how to go forward.

The report was not available before press time.

“With the holiday season upon us, it might be a bit before it can fully rectified,” stated Hood in an e-mail.

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