Water main break swamps Plum Street


A water main broke on Plum Street this morning, and officials are confident they can fix it by the end of the day. Officials said water services were disrupted for PNC Bank, and its water has been shut off. Workers were locating the correct line to fix, as well as other electrical and gas lines to avoid, as early as 7:30 a.m.
(Journal-Tribune photo by Jacob Runnels)
The City of Marysville hopes to repair a water main break on Plum Street by the end of the day.
According to Public Service Director Mike Andrako, the city received a report about the leak from the police department at about 7 a.m. today. The break is on Plum Street between Fourth and Fifth streets.
Andrako said the break stems from the material of the pipe, which is six-inch cast iron. The city is currently in the multi-year process of replacing all of the its cast iron pipes with PVC pipes, though there’s still about 11 miles of cast iron left.
“This is one of the lines we haven’t replaced yet,” Andrako said.
Andrako said the only customers being affected this morning are the nearby PNC Bank, Century Link and JMA Auto Sales. The city has to call the Ohio Utilities Protection Service, which will come out and mark other utilities in the area. Once that’s done, the city will begin repairs.
“Hopefully it’s turned back on by the end of the day,” Andrako said.
Andrako said this morning’s break is emblematic of a larger problem. While cast iron lines are good for a while, Andrako said the soil surrounding the pipes tends to eat away at the metal. Over time, that damage can cause holes, then breaks, in the line.
The city uses PVC pipes as replacements since they’re less susceptible to soil damage.
The city’s cast iron lines are at the end of their lifespan, when they begin to show their decades of wear.
City officials have made an effort of replacing cast iron lines over the past couple years. The city last year replaced about a mile of pipes on Court, Sixth and Eighth streets.
This year has seen the city replacing pipes on Plum Street between Fifth and Sixth streets, with more planned for Mulberry Street between Sixth and Seventh streets.
“As we replace them, we have less likelihood of a break,” Andrako said.
Andrako acknowledged that street work can be frustrating for residents trying to get around town, but reiterated the long-term benefits of such work.
“Once we replace these lines, then we don’t have to worry about breaks,” he said.

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