Arlington Heights contends with about 20 water main breaks, but problems could have been worse

  • A line rupture near the water town on Arlington Heights' south side last week led to a chain of events that caused about 20 water main breaks in the village since Friday, officials say. The last of the breaks were expected to be repaired Monday.

      A line rupture near the water town on Arlington Heights' south side last week led to a chain of events that caused about 20 water main breaks in the village since Friday, officials say. The last of the breaks were expected to be repaired Monday. Rick West | Staff Photographer

  • A line rupture near the water town on Arlington Heights' south side last week led to a chain of events that caused about 20 water main breaks in the village since Friday, officials say. The last of the breaks were expected to be repaired Monday.

      A line rupture near the water town on Arlington Heights' south side last week led to a chain of events that caused about 20 water main breaks in the village since Friday, officials say. The last of the breaks were expected to be repaired Monday. Rick West | Staff Photographer

 
 
Updated 7/29/2019 4:06 PM

About 20 water main breaks in parts of Arlington Heights over the weekend resulted from what officials say was a decision to prevent more widespread problems following a line rupture near the village's main tower on the south end of town.

"The vast majority of the community was unaffected by this," Village Manager Randy Recklaus said Monday. "They probably didn't know anything happened."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Recklaus said public works crews were expected to have the final two main breaks fixed sometime Monday. The initial main break occurred Friday near the South Arlington Heights Road water tower.

"That's a very bad place for a main break to occur, because that's where all the water pressure for the system is kind of coming through that tank," Recklaus said. "So, in order to counteract that, we did not want to risk losing water pressure for the (entire) system, so we cycled our pumps and that created additional water pressure in our system."

Recklaus said officials knew the decision to boost pressure to keep water flowing would lead to additional main breaks over the weekend.

"It still was preferable to the widespread loss of water pressure," he added.

Arlington Heights sent a social media message Sunday night cautioning residents that the breaks could have caused a temporary discoloration of tap water. The village suggested running the water for about 15 minutes until it was clear.

Recklaus said weak point in a water pipeline generally are exposed with a boost in pressure similar to what occurred over the weekend. He said each break in the village was different and that water did not have to be shut in all neighborhoods to make the repairs.

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