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Sue Bush
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Williamstown Water Main Break

By Susan Bush
12:00AM / Saturday, October 14, 2006

Water from a broken water main flooded a grassy area near Stetson Court on Fri. the 13th of October.
Williamstown - An Oct. 13 mid-morning town water main break kept town employees busy into the evening and left a portion of Route 2's south side under water.

The century-old pipe was found leaking at about 10:30 a.m. in an area to the west of Park Street near the Williams College '62 Center for Theater and Dance. Repair crews were working on the leak when water burst from the pipe.

"The pipe is about 100 years old," said water department supervisor Ed Rondeau. "We were working on it and at about noontime, it just blew right open. It opened up like a zipper."

Town workers quickly brought the situation under control but not before water poured over a grassy area near Stetson Court. Only the Stetson Court area was without water service while repairs were made, Rondeau said.

Town Manager Peter Fohlin was at the scene during the afternoon as repairs progressed.


A backhoe dug through pavement and dirt as part of water main repairs.
Syndicate Road and Park Street were closed to traffic and town police directed traffic along Route 2 while the day-long repairs were underway. Workers used jackhammers and a backhoe to dig about 12 feet through layers of pavement and dirt. The broken pipe was replaced with new pipe.

Repairs occurred within a few feet of an active 10-inch gas main that is also about 100 years old and made of cast iron. Gas service was not interrupted for the water repair work.

The broken water main once served as a main transmission line that carried water along Route 7 and then along Route 2, Rondeau said.
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