Many lose water service; others find water turns brown
A gas pipe replacement took an unexpected turn Tuesday morning when water came gushing up from a main at 3rd and Williams St. on the northwest corner of Marion’s courthouse square.
The water from a ruptured main that turned out being 10 feet from where it was listed as being drained into a storm sewer so fast it blew off its grate.
Most of the valley, which is supplied by that main, was without water service until 12:40 p.m. When service was restored, water was brown. Similar problems were noted in other areas that did not lose service.
Autumn Hanson, who owns Critter Connection animal boarding and grooming in south Marion, said being without water was a problem for her business.
“I’ve got two dogs coming at 1 o’clock, and one that needs to be groomed before he returns home,” Hanson said.
Hanson said she might have to buy bottled water at Carlson’s Grocery.
Wagon Wheel Express continued to serve lunch with its own limited source of water.
“We are doing our best to serve our customers,” a worker said.
The restaurant soon after closed for the day.
City administrator Roger Holter said city officials got reports of brown water in other parts of the city. Water from one water tower was being moved in an effort to avoid reduced pressure that would lead to a “boil water” order from Kansas Department of Health and Environment.
An automated phone call from the city at 1:15 p.m. said service was restored and the city would be flushing hydrants to reduce the discoloration.
Holter said the ruptured main drained four feet of water from the city’s smaller water tower in 10 minutes.
Gas pipe work was being done to replace leaking Atmos Energy lines. Workers from Mears Co. were digging in the alley south of the 300 block of E. Main St. and along Williams St.
According to the Atmos website, about 700 feet of 2-inch high-density polyethylene gas pipe will be installed to allow for abandonment of 280 feet of 5-inch bare steel pipes and 420 feet of 3-inch bare steel pipes inserted into 5-inch bare steel pipes.
The gas pipe work is expected to last through Sept. 15.
Staff writer Madeline Reida contributed to this story