PORTALES — The city of Portales experienced another rupture Monday in a 24-inch water main on the west side of city, according to a press release from the city of Portales.
It was the third major break in just over two years and flooded some streets and left many residents and businesses with low water pressure and others with no water at all.
The burst water main, in the area of U.S. 70 and Avenue K, was located this morning by city workers who originally hoped repairs could be made without turning off water service.
Capt. Lonnie Berry of the Portales Police Department said city crews were first informed of the problem about 7 a.m. Monday after water was seen bubbling in the area.
Berry said the break appeared to a bigger problem than first anticipated. Crews working to pump water away from the site got a boost when a pair of pumps from the city of Clovis arrived mid-afternoon.
“It looks like we’ve got more water turned off than we ever intended to,” Berry said late Monday. “Some businesses have water and some don’t.”
Water to businesses at the nearby Portales industrial park were shut off late Monday, according to Berry.
Berry said restaurants were being instructed to close if they didn’t have water pressure and the ability to maintain proper sanitation and dishwashing.
Berry said at 7:30 p.m. Monday that crews would be working through the night to restore service. He said officials believe the water can be restored to all businesses and residents overnight.
The two other leaks in the 24-inch water mains over the last two years occurred in the same general area as Monday’s break. In February 2006, water service was shut off to the entire city for nearly 20 hours. In May about half of the city lost water service for a shorter length of time.