The right-hand lane of U.S. Route 13 northbound, just north of the intersection of Route 13 and White Oak Road, had to be close at around noon on Wednesday due to a leak in the water main that runs under the northbound side of the highway.
The right-hand lane of U.S. Route 13 northbound just north of the intersection of Route 13 and White Oak Road had to be close at around noon on Wednesday due to a leak in the water main that runs under the northbound side of the highway.
Employees from the city of Dover were doing maintenance to repair a fire hydrant because its parts had become outdated, said Jason Lyon, water and waste water manager with the City of Dover.
“Typically what would happen is we would have shut the valve down in road and would have replaced the hydrant,” Lyon said. “It would not have interrupted service, but when the valve was operated due to the age of the valve and wear and tear it just broke apart and became non-functioning, which started the leak Route 13.”
The hydrant was connected into the water main by a lead pipe and a valve. When the valve was turned a nut broke off and water began flowing out, according to Travis Sammons a foreman with Aztech Contracting, the firm that is working to repair the leak.
The break was fairly minor, according to Henry Mast, owner of Aztech Contracting.
“This is basically a hydrant lead that broke and not the main itself,” Mast said. “It is part of the main, but you have an 8 inch main that runs parallel to the highway and then you have a tap and a lead coming off that feeds the hydrant. It’s a smaller line.”
A crew from Aztech dug through the asphalt that makes up Route 13 and replaced the broken valve. While they were excavating water continued to flow to surrounding businesses and residences, but at 1:30 p.m. the water was shut off so that crews could make the repair. By 7:30 p.m. water had been restored and the hole created by the excavation was filled with a temporary patch.
The right two lanes of Route 13 were closed on Thursday so that a permanent patch can be applied to the road.
The fire hydrant that crews were attempting to upgrade when the leak occurred will still be upgraded, but it is unclear yet when the repair will be done, according to Lyon.