Dunkirk Crews Work On Water Main Break In City

DUNKIRK — A high-pressure water line break on the 100-block of Central Avenue had city workers on the go this morning. The 80-year-old cast iron pipe that cracked around 4:30 a.m. was fully fixed and back in service at 11 a.m.

When the break occured, city crews quickly closed it off from both directions and had the stainless steel repair clamp installed, the line reactivated and road surface repaired soon after.

DPW Director Randy Woodbury and county health engineers communicated to coordinate the leak repair, especially to keep water flowing out as the pipe was clamped.

According to Woodbury, because the city kept positive pressure inside the pipe during break and repair, no area of the city system came in contact with anything but clean potable water. The process, he mentioned, prevents possible contamination and avoids any boil advisories.

Although the break spewed more than 100,000 gallons, officials noted elevated tanks contain 4 million gallons on pressurized reserve and the filter plant has another million gallons of finished water ready to pump and keep tanks full. Additionally, the North County Water District has more than 500,000 gallons of Dunkirk water in reserve elevated storage, and the Airport Industrial Park has another 400,000 gallons of elevated tank storage.

Mayor Wilfred Rosas thanked city crews for their rapid and professional response to make the repair and to bring the city water system back to full function with minimized water loss. City water is sourced from Lake Erie with all background materials filtered out with granular activated carbon. Rosas assured water customers that these will always be quickly addressed to not impact water quality and capacity.

A portion of Central Avenue from Lake Shore Drive to Second Street was closed from the morning hours to around 2 p.m. Wednesday.