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Water main breaks continue in city

Major water main breaks continued to snarl traffic Saturday, gushing water and closing some major thoroughfares.

State Boulevard, where a water main broke Friday, remained closed Saturday between Parnell and Crescent avenues and was expected to remain closed through Sunday and possibly longer. Officials said the water main there had multiple breaks.

Meanwhile, a water main break closed East Rudisill Boulevard between South Hanna and South Monroe streets Saturday. Repairs there were completed by 9 p.m.

Sherman Boulevard was restricted to local traffic only between West State and Spring Street for much of the day Saturday. That break was repaired, and traffic reopened around 4 p.m.

The city blamed the repeated breaks on the severe winter, which has pushed the frost line deep into the ground, sometimes below the level of water lines, causing them to break.

The city normally has 400 to 500 water main breaks a year, but this season there have been up to 14 a day. Most can take six to 15 hours to repair, officials have said.

Crews with water maintenance, the Water Pollution Control Plant and sewer maintenance made the repairs. Meanwhile, a plumbing contractor was helping with service lines that might have been frozen.

fgray@jg.net

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