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Water main breaks repaired Friday in St. Charles

Published: Saturday, Feb. 1, 2014 5:30 a.m. CDT
(Sandy Bressner –
St. Charles Public Works employees work to repair a water main break Friday on Riverside Avenue just north of East Main Street in downtown St. Charles.

ST. CHARLES – Crews in St. Charles spent much of Friday doing what is anticipated during winter months – repairing water main breaks.

“We had been fortunate so far,” said John Lamb, the city’s environmental services manager.

On average, he said, the city has about six water main breaks in January. The two that occurred Friday put the city about one over, he said.

He said that both lines affected Friday are almost 80 years old.

At most, Lamb said, water service was disrupted for a half-hour. He explained crews were able to isolate the lines and reroute the water.

“It could have been a lot worse,” Lamb said.

The first break happened about 7 a.m. on Riverside Avenue, just north of East Main Street, prompting the closure of Riverside Avenue between East Main Street and Cedar Avenue.

St. Charles Fire Chief Joe Schelstreet described the closure as a “very, very small inconvenience” for Fire Station No. 1, which is along Riverside Avenue just north of Cedar Avenue.

The fire station was built with such a scenario in mind, he said, explaining a bump-out in the road allows for extra space in front of the station.

“We’ll make a right, go north and head up State Avenue,” Schelstreet said.

The other water main break happened at about 7:45 a.m. on Route 25 – locally known as Fifth Avenue – between State and Park avenues, the city reported.

Traffic on Route 25 was reduced to one lane between Cedar and Park avenues during repairs, according to the city.

Lamb said both roads were reopened by late afternoon.

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