An effort to clean out old water lines downtown to combat “red water” and low-pressure ended up taking quite a bit longer than Richmond Utility officials expected this week.
The water line work, which was scheduled for 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday, actually went well into the night with some houses on Woodland Avenue not getting water service back until Wednesday afternoon.
Also, residents along Woodland Avenue, Glyndon Avenue and Moberly Avenue between Third and Fifth streets who did get their water service back Tuesday night were under a routine 24-hour boil water advisory.
Water Quality Specialist Lonnie Banks said a boil-water advisory is issued any time a main water line has been opened up to the air and possible contaminants.
After water samples were tested, the boil-water advisory was lifted late Wednesday afternoon.
Water Superintendent Danny Pearson said the aging water lines downtown have posed significant problems for people living in the area. Some of the pipelines date back to the 1930s, he said.
Build-up within the lines has caused pipes to get smaller, reducing water pressure. Also, especially in the hot temperatures of summer, some of the build-up can breakaway into the water, causing rusty, or “red water” to come out of residents’ taps.
“We’ve had to deal with more red water for the past few months,” Pearson said.
Hydrants along several downtown streets were being flushed on an almost daily basis to combat the discolored water problem, according to Banks.
Another problem affecting downtown water flow quality is residential usage has declined as more houses have become vacant, Pearson said. Manual hydrant flushing also has been used to deal that issue, which can affect the water flow to nearby occupied houses.
In the past, Richmond Utilities typically replaced, or re-lined, areas where the pipes had narrowed significantly. However, this time the utility tried a new process to clean out the pipes.
“It’s the first time we’ve done this,” Pearson said.
Because it was the first time, Pearson said the work took longer than expected and some problems were encountered. A few service lines to houses along Woodland Avenue needed repair, and water was shut off for longer periods to those homes. There also was a break to a main water line during the work.
“We’ve had quite a bit of trouble,” Pearson said.
If the water pressure and discolored water problems are resolved in the Woodland/Glyndon area, the utility hopes to use the same cleaning process in other areas of downtown, Pearson said. But first the utility will have to look at the how successful the cleaning was, plus its cost effectiveness and the length of service disruption to water customers, Pearson noted.
PVC pipe is a petroleum-based product that has increased in cost as oil prices have risen. Pearson said the price of PVC pipe has tripled in the past six years, so looking at alternative means of cleaning up the water lines has been a priority.
To clean out the water main, utility workers dug holes into the road along Woodland Avenue that were later covered with a temporary gravel mixture. Pearson said after that has settled for a week or two, the city will repave those areas.
- Local News
State champs get their rings at YMCA breakfast
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Team members were presented championship rings while their cheerleaders received pendants Saturday morning during a breakfast at the Telford YMCA attended by nearly 300.
Sand artist, pastry chef wow audience at cake expo
Joe Castillo dazzled audiences while performing at Eastern Kentucky University’s Center for the Arts Saturday during the Grace with Taste Cake Expo.
Castillo, along with pastry chef Stella Parks, were the entertainment acts at the expo early in the afternoon.
District urges students to ‘PowerMyLearning’ through the summer
Sixteen little penguins need help jumping from iceberg to iceberg as a hungry killer whale swims menacingly in the chilly water below.
The fate of the poor little penguins lies in the hands of a third-grade student, who must quickly find the answer to a math equation to lead the penguins to safety.
Vietnam vets mark Armed Forces Day
In the 1960s and ‘70s, when many campuses around the country were the scene of anti-war riots and demonstrations, Eastern Kentucky University was naming buildings and streets for its alumni who had died fighting for their country.
GREAT bridges gap between cops, preteens
Bridging the gap between public misconceptions about police officers and the reality of what’s behind the uniform can be a daunting task. But, a growing program at Madison County middle schools is helping break down those barriers.
Exit 95 rebuild delayed until 2017
Originally scheduled for 2014, the reconstruction of Exit 95 on Interstate 75 won’t take place until 2017, Madison Judge/Executive Kent Clark told a joint meeting of the Richmond and Berea chambers of commerce Friday.
The state Transportation Cabinet is delaying the project, Clark said, until a decision is made on the proposed highway that would run from Exit 95 to Nicholasville.
Toyota bornlearning Academy graduates parents
Seven graduates received their certificates Thursday night, but not with the customary rendition of “Pomp and Circumstance.”
It was a celebration of the parents’ six-month journey with the Toyota bornlearning Academy at Berea Community School.
The academy works with parents and caregivers of children from prenatal to 5 years old on ways to turn everyday moments into learning opportunities.
Caudill Middle School student showcase
Members of the Caudil Middle School Jazz Band entertain the crowd during the school's end of year student showcase Thursday.
Man arrested Friday after early morning break-in
Richmond police made an arrest Friday in connection with an early morning break-in at Jack’s Cleaners on West Water Street.
Scott Hobbs, 42, of McKee, was charged with first-degree burglary, according to Richmond Police Chief Larry Brock
At 3:25 a.m., a witness reported seeing a man enter and exit the cleaners through a broken window and drive away, Brock stated in a news release.
Grand jury indicts inmates in jail assault
Two inmates at the Madison County Detention Center were indicted Wednesday on charges related to the beating of another prisoner.
A Madison grand jury indicted 28-year-old Justin Morgan Howell and 26-year-old Lucas Wayne Shanks on charges of second-degree assault, second-degree escape and second-degree persistent felony offenders.
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