Waterline damaged near HCC

September 11, 2004|by MARLO BARNHART

HAGERSTOWN - Repairs to an 8-inch waterline on Robinwood Drive were completed Friday afternoon around 3:15 p.m. - more than six hours after a private contractor installing a new fiber-optic line accidentally damaged the underground pipe, forcing Hagerstown Community College to shut down all afternoon classes and night activities Friday.

HCC spokeswoman Beth Stull said all college activities today would occur as scheduled.

City of Hagerstown crews responded to the incident at 9 a.m. Friday and isolated the portion that was damaged, said David Shindle, manager of the Hagerstown Water and Sewer Department.

Water customers, including HCC, that are served by the line were without water during the repair.

"We got the word between 9 and 9:30 a.m.," said Jule Martin, an instructional assistant at the HCC Children's Learning Center, which has between 120 and 125 children.


Children who participate in morning activities normally go home at 10:10 a.m., so there was no disruption, Martin said. But bus drivers and parents bringing children for afternoon activities had to be notified there would be no afternoon classes.

Staff remained at the center until noon Friday so children and parents would not show up to find the doors locked, Martin said.

Traffic was directed out of the campus by college personnel. Incoming traffic was limited to emergency personnel. A lighted sign at the entrance announced that the campus would close at 11 a.m. Friday.

"At 1:45 p.m., we were able to cut out the damaged section," Shindle said Friday. "Putting in the new section shouldn't take long."

Shindle went on to explain that customers from Jefferson Boulevard, south to Mount Aetna Road, west to Robinwood Drive and east to Black Rock Estates probably experienced low pressure, discolored water or air in their lines.

Crews were out throughout the affected area during the morning and early afternoon Friday trying to eliminate the air buildup in the system.

Due to the disruption of the normal flow of the water, discolored water was expected to continue into Friday evening. Customers were advised to periodically check their cold water supply for this condition.

Efforts to identify the contractor who caused the damage to the waterline were unsuccessful.

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