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GLENDALE : Broken Pipe Shuts Down Water Service

A ruptured pipe cut off water service to about 400 homes in the Glenoaks Canyon area before dawn Tuesday, although city officials were hoping to have service restored by this morning.

A resident reported seeing water gushing from the street near the intersection of Edwards Place and Gardner Place in Glendale at about 2:30 a.m., officials said. A water main located next to a pumping plant that serves a city reservoir in the canyon broke apart, sending hundreds of thousands of gallons into the street, said Bernard Palk, the city’s public service director.

“We’re not exactly clear at this point what caused the break,” Palk said. “I inspected the break and there was significant damage. It could have been latent from the earthquake, or from the age of the pipe.” The pipe is 40 years old.

The damage also could have been caused by the roots of three large pine trees growing over the water main, he added. Efforts to repair the pipe were delayed because workers had to remove the trees to reach it, Palk said.

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To isolate the damaged pipe, workers shut off valves serving the entire eastern section of the canyon, roughly from Edwards Place to Scholl Canyon Park, said Don Froelich, the city’s water services administrator. The repair work, including filling a hole that was dug around the pipe and cleaning up mud from the streets, was not expected to be finished until about 4:30 a.m. today or later, he said.

James Morita of Edwards Place said it was the most serious breakdown in water service in the 22 years he has lived in the neighborhood.

“This is the longest we’ve been without water, but we’re making do with what we had in the refrigerator, just a couple of quarts of water,” said Morita, 64.

Jerry Jacobs, an 18-year resident, said the biggest inconvenience was the inability to flush the toilet.

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“Everybody wants them to fix it right away, but when it’s a problem this big and they’ve got that many people working on it, we just have to be patient,” said Jacobs, 58.


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