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Water leaks through hole in reservoir

December 29, 1997

A hole in the City of Hagerstown's Smithsburg reservoir has decreased the reservoir's capacity to about 5 million gallons, a city official said Monday.

About 15 million gallons, or three-fourths of the reservoir's capacity, leaked from the reservoir, the city water department's manager said.

The water quit leaking when the level dropped below the 4-foot- by-8-foot hole in the bottom slope of the reservoir, said Manager Gene Walzl.

Walzl said he expects officials from Gannett Fleming Engineers Inc. to inspect the hole within two weeks to determine repair options.

The reservoir south of Smithsburg is not a source of drinking water for Hagerstown's roughly 75,000 water customers.

It is the larger of two reservoirs that hold dirty water filtered out during the treatment process at the William M. Breichner Water Treatment Plant.

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Walzl said he wasn't sure whether the temporary lowered capacity of the reservoir would affect the amount of water the plant can treat.

The cause of the hole had not been determined as of Monday, Walzl said.

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