Several Water Main Breaks Reported in Strathmore Over Weekend
There were two breaks in the F section as well as one in the N section, NJ American Water officials say.
The Strathmore section of Aberdeen Township experienced several water main breaks over the weekend, including two in the "F" section and one in the "N" section, according to Peter Eschbach, the director of communications and external affairs for New Jersey American Water.
As of 9:30 a.m., Eschbach said, all of the breaks had been repaired except for the one in the "N" section, which is expected to be completed this afternoon.
Eschbach explained that the aging cement pipes below the neighborhood were originally installed in the 1960s.
"It has been causing a number of problems over the years and we've been dealing with it," he said.
When a pipe breaks, he explained, valves on each side of the break have to be located so crew members can turn off the water. Once the water is turned off the crew has to determine exactly where the break is so as to reduce the amount of digging that has to be done.
Then, Eschbach said, the pipe is either patched or replaced, depending its condition. The process takes several hours.
This weekend on Ferland Lane in Strathmore, however, almost immediately after the first break was repaired a second one occurred.
"Pipe segments failed that were close to each other. All these people were out of water for several hours. Then when they thought O.K. the water is coming back, another segment nearby broke and [the crews] had to repeat the process," Eschbach said.
New Jersey American Water is working to revamp the water infrastructure across the state.
"We spend hundred of millions across the state just trying to replace infrastructure," he said. "The infrastructure is aging faster than we can replace it and obviously everyone wants to keep their rates down."
Last year, the Board of Public Utilities approved NJAW for a distribution system improvement program. According to Eschbach, participation in the program will help the utility company accelerate improvements to priority areas like Strathmore.
Tell Us: Did you experience any of the water main breaks this weekend?