Cleanup continues after NE Phila water main break


The Philadelphia Water Department tells Action News that an 8-inch main broke around 10:00 p.m. at the intersection of Willits and Ashton roads.

Officials initially thought it was a 24-inch main, but corrected that information on Monday morning.

Roads in the area were closed over night, but were reopened by Monday morning. Water service was also restored on Monday.

Viewer video of the early moments of the break shows water shooting straight out of the ground into the air like a geyser.

Witnesses told Action News that water shot nearly 50 feet in the air after the main broke.

Water could be seen gushing down the street until the water department was able to shut down the main around midnight.

Officials evacuated two homes in the area. L&I crews responded to the scene to evaluate damage to the homes.

George Dunson spotted flooding as he was about to go to bed and watched as the water quickly rose. He hasn't estimated the cost of the damage but, between new power tools and appliances, he says it could be steep.

"My heater was underwater, hot water heater, the washer and dryer are beat.

Restoration crews were clearing out the basement of nearby pizza shop Salvito's while another neighbor surveyed the damage, which he believes could have been even worse if he and his roommate hadn't been home.

"We were bailing water out of the basement, that helped out a lot," said Ali DanBangura.

In all, two homes and two businesses were damaged.

Last Sunday, a water main break at 21st and Bainbridge forced dozens of South Philadelphia residents to evacuate their homes.

The break damaged at least 100 homes.

The aftermath opened up a large sinkhole which led to a gas leak.

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