SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) – Crews in San Francisco were working to fix a broken water main in the Sunset District Tuesday morning, according to city officials.
The break is the latest in a series of infrastructure breaches amid a week of wild weather.
The water main broke on Noriega Street near 18th Avenue in the Inner Sunset, according to officials with San Francisco Public Utilities Commission.But it left quite a mess when it broke.
The 8-inch water main broke at 7:30 a.m. Tuesday morning, sending water gushing down the street and – in some cases – flowing straight into residents’ homes.
“We have to get in as quickly as possible, isolate the leak and shut the water off,” said SF Public Utilities Commission spokesperson Suzanne Gautier. “Which is why there’s an interruption in service for some customers in the area.”
The incident is one of 12 breaks that have happened in San Francisco in the past two weeks, including at least three in Potrero Hill and one along the cable car line on Mason at Jackson. Most of them were caused by the cold weather and heavy rain from the recent winter storm system.
The public utilities commission says San Francisco sees about 130 large main breaks each year. The city will see more this winter.
San Francisco has over 1,200 miles of pipeline under the streets. More than 100 miles of pipe are over 100 years old.
“So when we have these breaks, our prime objective is to preserve public health and safety and maintain water service, or return service as soon as possible,” said Gautier.
The city is replacing 12 miles of pipe per year with stronger, more earthquake resistant iron material.
Once the water main is repaired at the site of Tuesday morning’s break, crews will still have to repair the replace the fractured roadway. Noriega Street will be shut down for at least the rest of the day.