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Mon-Yough water line breaks slicken roads

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Friday, Jan. 10, 2014, 4:51 a.m.
 

Though Thursday was a far sight warmer than earlier in the week, below freezing temperatures caused ice problems around several local water line breaks.

Most notably, a broken 6-inch water main in Lincoln caused some traffic problems along Liberty Way when water on the roadway started to freeze.

When the break occurred at about 7:10 a.m., “it completely iced over,” said Lincoln police Chief Richard Bosco. “Traffic was down to one lane for a short time.”

Geography aggravated the situation because the break near Virginia Drive caused water to flow downhill into a bend in the roadway. Bosco said one driveway was damaged by water flow.

The chief credited authorities, including crews from PennDOT and Pennsylvania American Water Co., with a quick response that kept icy conditions in check.

“Everybody has been on top of it,” the chief said.

Water company spokesman Gary Lobaugh said about 25 customers were affected by the break.

Forty water company customers in Glassport were affected on Thursday by a broken 2-inch line in the 600 block of Peach Alley, Lobaugh said.

A resident along that roadway said that break occurred around 8 a.m. Road crews salted the alley to lessen the buildup of ice.

Though below freezing temperatures and resulting ice make water line breaks more noticeable in winter, Lobaugh said the water company isn't experiencing anything out of the ordinary in terms of the number of breaks.

“This could be the middle of June,” he said. “We experience a handful of breaks every day.”

Experts say it's a good idea to have a supply of bottled drinking water available in the event there is a water main break.

After a water main break is repaired, tap water may appear cloudy. Customers should turn on cold tap water and let water run for a few minutes until there is no sign of discoloration.

If water stays cloudy for longer than five minutes, customers should wait 30 minutes and try again.

Eric Slagle is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161, ext. 1966.

, or eslagle@tribweb.com.

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