Main Water Line Springs A Leak

By: Lauri Martin
By: Lauri Martin

You may not see it at your tap, but Colorado Springs Utilities had a break in one of their main water lines. If this had happened during the summer, when water demands are higher, it could've created a water shortage.

Near 11 Mile Reservoir in Park County, the pipeline supplies 50 to 70% of the Springs’ water supply, but early Tuesday morning, it sprang a leak. “We lost 2 ½ millions gallons of water,” Tom Vidmar, the superintendent of the Homestake water system said. It is 76 miles of pipe that carries water to Aurora and Colorado Springs. Vidmar said corrosion led to the pipe break.

100 cubic feet of water pass through the pipe every second under 220 pounds of pressure. So, when the pipe gave way, you can only imagine what kind of explosion it created. It was such a big explosion, it left a huge hole in the ground. You can now see the pipe, which is usually buried 5 feet underground. And, pieces of the pipe were found 150 feet away.

“This is 5th break in past 20 years; it's rare." Rare, but Vidmar said it could happen again. The water system is more than 40 years old. "A repair job like this is an order of $20,000," Scott Campbell with CSU said. The repair should be done within the next 10 days.

"Folks shouldn't worry. The system will be back together soon and no one will be without water on account of this leak," Vidmar said.

CSU said this pipe break reiterates the fact that Colorado Springs needs another water supply system like the Southern Delivery System. If that project gets the go ahead, water from Pueblo Reservoir would be brought into the Springs.


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