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Another water line breaks in Shepherdstown

two schools closed today

October 24, 2008|By DAVE McMILLION

SHEPHERDSTOWN, W.Va. - A water line broke again in Shepherdstown Thursday as construction crews were attempting to replace an aging main waterline in front of the town's water treatment plant on Princess Street, the town's public works director said.

It was the third line to break in the Jefferson County town over the last 2 1/2 years.

The main water line that broke in front of the water plant Thursday is about 40 years old and valves on the line do not work, Frank Welch said.

Construction crews were working on the old line at about 2:30 p.m. when one of the old valves failed and "it blew the line apart," Welch said.

Crews finished repairing the break at about 9 p.m., and Welsh said he expected water service to be restored to the service area by midnight Thursday.

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As a standard precaution, a boil water advisory is in effect for all areas east of Sheetz until further notice, Welsh said. That advisory is likely to be in effect until at least Saturday, when the town will receive test results from the health department, he said.

Because of the water situation, Shepherdstown Elementary and Shepherdstown Middle schools will be closed today, according to the Jefferson County Schools Web site.

Last November, a 12-inch line along Shepherd Grade Road near the Willowdale subdivision broke, leaving town residents without water as they began getting ready for the Thanksgiving weekend.

That line was installed in the 1970s, and Recorder Lance Dom, who was mayor at the time, attributed the break to the age of the line.

About a year and half before the Willowdale subdivision break, a water line ruptured on the Shepherd University campus.

Dom said at the time that the breaks were a matter of "just keeping up with single occurrences."

o For more information, check out Shepherdstown's Web site, shepherdstown.us/

Staff writer Heather Keels contributed to this story

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