COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - Residents near the intersection of Trenholm Road and Beltline Boulevard in East Columbia went without water for about 12 hours after a water main break occurred Monday evening.
Columbia Water officials said they began to get reports of the water main break at around 5 o’clock Monday, and have been working on repairs since.
Christina Ruiz, a neighbor said, “My husband thought it was a huge animal that had been hit in the road because all he saw was like a blackness in the road, and then you saw the water bubbling up.”
Trenholm Road is closed as crews work to fix it. The sinkhole was caused by a burst pipe, officials said.
“We believe what happened here was this water line was actually laid underneath a storm drain, a large 36 inch, 42 inch concrete storm drain, we believe that over time that storm drain just settled and as a result of that, it actually rested on our water line and contributed to the break,” Director of Utilities at Columbia Water Joey Jaco said.
As a result of that, officials had to turn off the water to make repairs, which caused concerns for some neighbors.
“I need a kidney, I’m waiting on a living donor or a cadaver so I’m limited on what I can do and things like that at home so I need all the facilities that come with the convenience of water,” Ruiz said. “It concerns me that if it were an emergency I wouldn’t be able to get anywhere there that fast with all this mess in the way, or somebody could get to me.”
Officials say it was roughly a six-block radius with people not having water during the time of repairs. Water was later restored Tuesday afternoon.
“We’re going back with a metal pipe, that is the common metal pipe used in water systems today, that’s what we used to repair our systems, so the fix that we do today- it will be a long term fix,” Jaco said.
Officials say the longest part of the project will be repairing the roadway, which is the next step in this process.
They say it could be another two-three days before lanes are re-opened.
Columbia Water laboratory staff advises the water customers of Trenholm Rd from Glenwood Rd to East Buchanan Dr. located in Richland County, to vigorously boil their water for at least one full minute prior to drinking or cooking. Also, any residents near the affected area who have lost water and/or water pressure are advised to vigorously boil their water for at least one full minute prior to drinking or cooking.
Columbia Water has experienced a 16” Water Line Break. This could possibly result in bacterial contamination of the water on Trenholm Rd from Glenwood Rd to East Buchanan Dr. Water customers should continue to vigorously boil their water for at least one full minute prior to drinking or cooking until otherwise notified by Columbia Water laboratory staff. Also, any ice made from water that has not been boiled should not be used for drinking purposes.
Contact the City of Columbia Customer Care Center at 545-3300 with any inquiries concerning this advisory.