Water break snarls traffic

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 11, 2002

Staff Writer

A break in a 10-inch water main caused plenty of headaches for city of Troy employees and motorists.

On Wednesday afternoon, a break in the line underneath U.S. 87 near the intersection of U.S. 231, was discovered, forcing closure of one lane of traffic on the busiest intersection in the city.

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"That is the busiest intersection south of Birmingham," Troy Mayor Jimmy Lunsford said.

The mayor said more than

35,000 cars pass through that intersection each day.

"If we had to have a break that would be the worst place to have it," Lunsford said.

Because of the water line break, traffic was kept backed up at that intersection for more than 24 hours.

Mike Davis, project manager for the Utilities Department, said the break was fixed between 10:30 p.m. and 11 p.m. Wednesday.

Workers spent Thursday repairing the roadway.

Davis said the break was "an inconvenience" for some citizens at home.

He said water did have to be turned off for about 1.5 hours while the break was repaired, but most of those on that line included businesses that were already closed for the night.

"We worked it live until we found the leak so we wouldn’t inconvenience anyone more than we had to," Davis said.

The new year has proven to be a busy one for the Utilities Department, which has had to handle a major power outage New Year’s Day and a major water line break less than two weeks later.

"So far, 2002 has been one freak accident after another," Lunsford said.

Lunsford said the incident has cost "a lot in overtime" because Utilities Department employees had to work almost all night to fix the problem and police officers had to direct traffic through the intersection as work was done.

Thursday afternoon, firefighters washed down the roadway after road work was wrapped up for the day.