Water Break Shuts Down Parts Of Downtown Chattanooga
was shut down Wednesday due to a water spill that flooded out streets and shut
down water to several buildings in the area.
The break was the result of AT&T contractor drilling in the area.
Water issued a statement saying that repairing the main would take some time,
and that water would continue to run into the street until the main could be
reached and shut off.
Most of the
affected buildings in the area had their water restored by late Wednesday, the
result of rerouting water through other mains, however the water pressure is
expected to remain low until the broken main is repaired and functioning
the extent of the broken main’s effects were not immediately available, but it
was estimated that up to 10,000 employees in the downtown area were affected
with low or no pressure water on Wednesday.
water main is the primary supply of fresh water for Tennessee American Water
customers downtown, on the Southside, Lookout Mountain and parts of North
Georgia. Streets in Chattanooga’s south
side were flooded by thousands of gallons of water pouring from the broken main
for a period of several hours.
Enterprises was the AT&T contractor responsible for the problem. They were drilling under a sidewalk on Cowart
St. to install concrete ducts for AT&T fiber optic lines. The drill got too close to the water main,
and speculation is that it either hit it directly or at least with enough force
to shake it loose at the joints.
A spokesman for
Klein Enterprises says that there is no way the drill could have punctured the
main, due to the drill being at a depth of 9 feet and the main being no more
than 6 feet deep.
they are examining the problem and investigating the probable cause. They are also assisting Tennessee-American
and city engineers with repairing the line.
There is no
word yet on who will bear the brunt of the repair costs. All parties involved say their primary
concern is to get the water back on and customers back in service.
Fire Department said they have relocated tankers filled with water throughout
the city, just in case they have to fight a fire where water may not have been
restored or may be at insufficient pressure.
They also have the ability to draft water out of the Tennessee River, if
estimates are inconclusive, but area businesses are already calculating
possible loss of revenue as a result of the water damage.
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