A water line break, the third such incident in Clinton in little more than two months and the second in as many weeks, shut off water to about 50 customers along a stretch of U.S. 701 (Southeast Boulevard) Thursday.
The line break, first reported as a leak and then discovered to be a fracture at one of the joints on the U.S. 701 line, was being repaired by crews late Thursday morning and into the afternoon. Among the approximately 50 customers were numerous businesses in the area, including the Clinton Dialysis Center, Waffle Kitchen and Dairy Queen and stretching all the way down to Dollar General, encompassing nearby gas stations and several other facilities.
“It is a 12-inch line,” said city manager John Connet. “We probably have less than 50 affected customers. We went door to door and sent out an automated phone call to notify them.”
Signs were posted notifying motorists of work going on, but traffic was not being diverted early Thursday afternoon as crews dug into the ground near the Han-De Hugo’s at the corner of Rowan Road and Southeast Boulevard. Crews were focused at the Southeast Boulevard entrance to the store’s parking lot.
“It basically effects between Dollar General and the Rowan Road area,” Connet noted of the break.
The line break comes just 10 days removed from one on Stewart Avenue that city officials called one of the largest in Clinton’s history, responsible for the loss of hundreds of thousands of gallons from the city’s system. Water was shut off to 75 residences during that Feb. 11 break and traffic diverted throughout the day. A separate line on North Boulevard was the site of a break in mid-December.
Connet said quick changes in temperature tend to expose weaknesses in water lines. Weather was likely the culprit in each of the two previous breaks, however the city manager held off on assigning a possible cause for Thursday’s break on U.S. 701. He did say that it was not of the magnitude of last week’s damage on Stewart Avenue.
“There is a small leak,” he said. “I think they got on top of it pretty quick.”
Chris Berendt can be reached at 910-592-8137 ext. 121 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.