Water main break causes street collapse in Mount Airy

MOUNT AIRY - August 14, 2012

The road is blocked off and crews are out working at the site after the early morning break to a 16-inch water main on the 900 block of Wadsworth Avenue.

"And it sent like an earthquake split straight down the street," explained neighborhood resident Gene Frasier.

Frasier was among the neighbors out gazing at the street on the 900 block of Wadsworth Avenue, which now sits buckled and broken in front of their homes.

This morning just before 4:30 a.m. water gushed down the street after a break in the 16-inch water main.

Brenda Whitlock tells Action News, "There was so much water it was like a river, it was really scary."

Gene Frazier tells us, "I come home and notice the street all broke up. I mean literally, a 25-foot split and then some. And my whole driveway's sunk."

The Water Department says the water main is 63-years-old, and that the water did not flood any properties. Neighbors say this isn't the first time they've dealt with nearby water main breaks. The Water Department explains while there have been breaks in the area they have not been on the same water main.

"This is like the fourth time this has happened," says neighbor Renee Calabrese. "This is the worst one yet. It actually looks like an earthquake hit."

Just before 9:00 a.m. PGW and the Fire Department were called to the block after a neighbor smelled gas. While crews inspected and checked levels, firefighters went door to door telling people to stay inside.

The Water Department is expecting to have the water main fixed by the end of the day, but at this point there is no word on when the street will be fixed.

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