Two water main breaks in Pearl City just a block apart

Published  12:51 AM HST Jun 29, 2013
PEARL CITY, Hawaii -

Four water main breaks in just three days. Two on Friday in Pearl City just a block apart. Ka'ahumanu Street in Pearl City was a mess.  A 12-inch water main broke, splitting the road and leaving a gaping hole in the middle of the street.

"It was like a river on both sides of the street. I thought it was a break in front of my house because I came out here, and water was just shooting out," said resident Donald Benoza.

Before Board of Water Supply crews arrived to stop the water, the sinkhole was exposed leaving drivers little chance to avoid it.

"They hit the sinkhole. After they hit the sinkhole, they did a loopy loop and they actually came down real hard," described resident Rod Ng.

About 50 homes in the area were out of water from 11 a.m. It took BWS crews more than six hours to restore the water pressure.

"We save enough water to cook because when we saw the water coming out we started saving water," said Ng.
 
Just up the road, another break, an 8-inch water main on Laauhuahua Place leaving more than 20 homes without water. On Kahala Avenue a main broke yesterday, leaving the Kahala Hotel dry.  

These destructive breaks are becoming an all too common sight in Oahu. Just last month a 16-inch main burst in McCully. The surrounding streets flooded with nearly a quarter million gallons of water, shutting down entire neighborhoods. In the first four months of this year, there have been at least 102 water main breaks, an average of one every day.
 
The BWS says the age of the mains could be to blame. The two that broke today were installed in the 1970s, the one on McCully was installed more than 60 years ago.

Crews are expected to work on repairs on the water main breaks in Pearl City throughout the night. The BWS says it's in the process of identifying root causes of water main breaks.

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