Water main breaks in city, county close roads, leave hundreds without water

December 19, 2013|By Carrie Wells and Joe Burris, The Baltimore Sun

Several water main breaks in the city and Baltimore County Wednesday night and Thursday morning shut down roads and are affecting service to hundreds of customers.

A 30-inch, cast iron main that dates back to the 19th century broke in downtown Baltimore at East Madison Street and Guilford Avenue at around 10:30 p.m. Wednesday, according to the Baltimore City Department of Public Works.

Spokesman Kurt Kocher had no firm estimate of how many customers were without water in the areas nearby, but said workers had addressed issues with low water pressure at Mercy Hospital. Kocher said repairs to the main would be tricky because it was close to utility lines, and he did not know when repairs would be complete.

The Guilford Avenue exit ramp on the southbound Jones Falls Expressway was closed, as were multiple roads around the area, as crews worked the fix the break. As of early Thursday afternoon, Kocher said crews were close to shutting down the main.

This is the third time that the water main, which runs from Martin Luther King Boulevard to the JFX, has broken since February 2009, according to DPW. Its replacement is considered "high priority" by DPW and is expected to begin in 2016.

A 12-inch water main break in Middle River, at Eastern Boulevard and Kingston Road, cut service to 200 customers, seven hydrants, the Hawthorne Plaza shopping center and Hawthorne Elementary School, officials said. There was no word on how significant road closures were.

Another 12-inch water main break in the 3100 block of Moravia Road had closed a section of that road between Walther Avenue and Harford Road, officials said. About 20 water customers were affected by the break.

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