City manager helps fix water-main break

Jon Pic

Instead of working in his office Monday, Herb Llewellyn, city manager, spent the day out working in the elements.

As part of the United Way campaign, city employees can enter a drawing to have a day off, with Llewellyn working in their place.

While last year, no one claimed the day off, that wasn’t the case this year.

An employee in the utilities department won the day off and had scheduled it for Monday about two to three weeks ago. So Monday Llewellyn went to work in the water and sewer system maintenance division.

“We were busy all day long, so the day went fast,” Llewellyn said.

Part of that business was fixing a water main break.

“It was cold,” Llewellyn said, “and a lot of time when it gets cold, we have water main breaks.”

The water main was a large one too, serving Pizza Hut, Taco Bell and the surrounding businesses and residences.

They were out working on it for about three hours. To make it even more difficult, they left the water running while doing the repairs so no one was completely out of water.

“I guess it could have been a sewer main break and that would have been worse,” he said.

Llewellyn helped out in general on the job.

“They let me run a Bobcat and jackhammer with it,” he said.

He also loaded the Bobcat and drove a truck.

“I knew I had worked when it was over,” Llewellyn said. “Most days I spend it thinking and doing that kind of work, and this was more manual and less thinking. I was the junior man and had to do what I was told.”

He returned from that job wet and muddy.

“I went straight to the wash room,” he said of when he returned home, “and my clothes went right into the washing machine, and my wife was pointing all the way.”

But he considers the experience a good one.

“It got me out there actually seeing what everyone does,” he said. “I often spend a lot of time in my office and don’t get out.”

El Dorado Times