LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – A large water main break near the University of Louisville has left several thousand homes and businesses without water and brought low water pressure to many other customers across a widespread area.
The break was reported around 6 p.m. at Floyd and Warnock streets. According to the Louisville Water Company, the break happened in a 48 inch feeder line, one of the main lines in the system. After original estimates by LWC president Greg Heitzman of 100,000 to 150,000 customers impacted by the break, that number was revised down to 25,000 customers, or 75,000 people, without water service. Heitzman said there are no homes or businesses outside the Watterson Expressway affected.
From Air 3, water could be seen covering both Floyd Street and Warnock Street, extending for several blocks in each direction. The water flooded several athletic fields on the University of Louisville campus that line Warnock.
A Louisville Fire Department boat was one the scene in case water rescues needed to be made, but none have been reported. There has also been no report of injuries.
The break had an impact on Louisville businesses. A spokesperson for Jewish Hospital on East Chestnut Street tells WAVE 3 the hospital is using a backup water supply. At University Hospital, spokesperson David McArthur tells us pumps helped the facility maintained pressure, but the boil water advisory issued after the break has forced them to make some changes.
McArthur said bottled water is being brought in for drinking. Employees and visitors are also being asked not to wash their hands with the tap water, but to use hand-sanitizer stations. McArthur said in the few cases where hand washing is still required, there are clean hand washing stations are being set up for use.
A Norton Healthcare spokesperson said their three hospitals in the affected area – Norton Hospital, Kosair Children's Hospital and Norton Audubon Hospital, are dealing with the water issues and have backup plans for such an incident.
Several restaurants along Bardstown Road in the Highlands closed early Monday night because of the water problems.
Our newsroom received reports of low water pressure from many parts of the Metro area. LWC's Heitzman expects full water pressure to be restored around 3 a.m.