a couple of cars that are sitting in the street
Crews repair a wastewater line break at MM 92 on Monday evening, as traffic is diverted off U.S. 1 to the Old Highway. JIM McCARTHY/Keys Weekly

Another year and another sewer line break has occurred in Tavernier.

An alert by the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office went out just after 5 p.m. on May 13 of the wastewater line break at MM 92. Vehicles were seen slowly navigating U.S. 1 north as dark, smelly water began surfacing on the highway. 

With help from deputies, traffic was diverted off U.S. 1 near MM 92 to the Old Highway so crews with the village of Islamorada and Mark Page Excavating could begin repairs. The break happened to the village of Islamorada’s force main, which sends wastewater to the Key Largo treatment plant. The repairs were completed around 4 a.m. the next morning. 

In June 2023, a sewer line break occurred just north of the latest break at MM 92.5. Repairs took from June 18 to June 20. 

In March 2019, a 20-foot sewer line broke at MM 92.5. Repairs took roughly 12 hours to complete.

Islamorada’s collection system, which serves residents and businesses from Plantation Key to Lower Matecumbe Key, is a combination of vacuum and low pressure with sewage conveyed to the Key Largo Wastewater Treatment Facility.

Jim McCarthy
Jim McCarthy is one of the many Western New Yorkers who escaped the snow and frigid temperatures for warm living by the water. A former crime & court reporter and city editor for two Western New York newspapers, Jim has been honing his craft since he graduated from St. Bonaventure University in 2014. In his 4-plus years in the Keys, Jim has enjoyed connecting with the community. “One of my college professors would always preach to be curious,” he said. “Behind every person is a story that’s unique to them, and one worth telling. As writers, we are the ones who paint the pictures in the readers minds of the emotions, the struggles and the triumphs.” Jim is past president of the Key Largo Sunset Rotary Club, which is composed of energetic members who serve the community’s youth and older populations. Jim is a sports fanatic who loves to watch football, hockey, mixed martial arts and golf. He also enjoys time with family and his new baby boy, Lucas, who arrived Oct. 4, 2022.