Water Main Break Sealed In Athens; Boil Alert Issued - NBC4: Columbus, Ohio News, Weather, and Sports (WCMH-TV)

Water Main Break Sealed In Athens; Boil Alert Issued

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ATHENS, Ohio -

A "significant" water main break has been sealed in Athens, but residents remain under a boil alert until Wednesday night.

A 12-inch water main ruptured early Tuesday morning, sending a river of water streaming down North Congress Street. The "significant" leak was sealed shortly after 2 p.m. Tuesday.

Officials issued a water shortage alert due to the water loss from the break. Residents were asked conserve water until further notice.

"It ruptured and we were unable to get in to do the repairs without letting a significant amount of water out of the reservoir," said Deputy Service Safety Director Ron Lucas.

The city issued the following message at about 3:20 p.m.: 

"As mains come online, service will return to the affected area. Please report water coming up from the pavement or ground to the Engineering and Public Works Department at 740-593-7636. There will still be some intermittent outages in the immediate vicinity of the break as valves are turned back on. Also, citizens city-wide may experience water discoloration. This should not cause alarm, and is due to iron in the bottom of the lines that was stirred up during the situation, however, please avoid doing any white laundry while the discoloration is present.

"The city is lifting the water shortage alert imposed earlier, however, a water shortage advisory is still in effect and we ask citizens to avoid unnecessary use of water over the next 24 hours while the system refills. "

A new boil alert was issued at 4 p.m. Tuesday for all Athens water customers located west of U.S. Route 33 and north of the Hocking River, except University Estates and North Pointe subdivision. The boil order is set to expire at 10 p.m. Wednesday.

Ohio University issued the following message regarding the impact of the water main break on campus:

"Water pressure may be intermittent as valves are turned back on. Lower campus (South Green, East Green, West Green) should see improvements first while upper campus (including areas such as College Green, Scott Quad, Bryan, Voigt, Bromley, Copeland, RTEC, and Bentley) will take longer to come back on line.

"As a contingency, portable toilets will be stationed at various locations around campus beginning at 4 p.m. Those locations include:

  • West Green – In front of Boyd Hall
  • Upper East Green – At the Howard Hall Site
  • East Green – In parking lot 44 near McCracken Hall
  • South Green – In front of South Beach
  • South Green – In Parking lot 79 in front of Adams Hall
  • Bromley Hall – Bromley Hall rear parking area
  • 31 South Court Street – Near the residential entrance off of the alley

"Dining facilities have contingency plans to operate during boil orders and will remain open.

"There is no life safety threat to the campus. Campus remains open, classes will continue as normal. All events to include events at Memorial Auditorium and the Convo will continue and are not cancelled."

In addition, the following bans were imposed:

  • No washing of motor vehicles
  • No running of outdoor fountains, reflecting pools and artificial waterfalls
  • No non-agricultural plant watering
  • No filling of private swimming pools

Due to the main line break there was a boil order for the following streets:

  • Pine Place
  • Fremont Avenue
  • West Carpenter Street
  • First Street
  • Walker Street

As a result of the water main break, Athens High School and Athens Middle School dismissed early at 12:30 p.m., and all elementary schools dismissed at 1:30 p.m.

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