[UPDATED, Nov. 26, 8:30 a.m.] A water main at the corner of LaSalle Road and Farmington Avenue in West Hartford Center broke Tuesday afternoon, creating a sink hole.
By Ronni Newton
Repairs to a water main that burst around lunchtime Tuesday and caused a sink hole at a busy West Hartford Center intersection were nearly complete by dinnertime Tuesday, although final repairs to the pavement won’t be made until spring 2015.
The water main pipe burst at the intersection of Farmington Avenue and LaSalle Road at approximately 12:45 p.m. Tuesday.
West Hartford Town Engineer Duane Martin said that when he arrived at the scene, the sink hole itself was a depression approximately 3 ft by 4 ft. It wasn’t terribly deep, but it was filled with water. There was cracking in the pavement all around the area, including in the crosswalk.
However, what might not have been immediately apparent to bystanders was the condition of LaSalle Road. “For roughly 50 ft, headed south on LaSalle, the surface of the road had dropped,” Martin said Wednesday morning. There was settling all along the area.
According to the Metropolitan District Commission (MDC), water service was turned off, impacting businesses along LaSalle Road from Farmington Avenue to Arapahoe Street. The MDC went door-to-door to inform all of the affected businesses.
By 5 p.m., MDC spokesperson Rob Langenauer said that repairs were almost complete and he expected that water service would be restored between 5:30 and 6 p.m.
The southbound lane of LaSalle Road was closed while repairs were being made, with public works erecting barricades and police directing traffic.
According to a news release from the Town of West Hartford, “The problem was first discovered while a police officer was on patrol. He noticed the sinkhole and 25-foot wide distress cracks near the crosswalk on LaSalle Road. The MDC, the West Hartford-Bloomfield Health District, the Department of Public Works and Town Engineer were alerted.”
“We’re very happy they reacted quickly,” said Martin. “It could have been much worse than it was.”
Langenauer said that the MDC is handling the repair of the water main as well as the repair of the road.