Crews still working to fix 2nd water leak in Dunbar

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — At 6 a.m. Friday, West Virginia American Water company officials reported ongoing work to fix the second leak that lead to continued water problems for thousands of West Virginians Thursday in parts of Kanawha County and Putnam County.

Morning storms were reportedly extending the repair completion time.

Overnight, alternate water feeds being used were shutoff so leak repairs could be completed safely.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Just like Wednesday night, West Virginia American Water Company hopes that repairs should be made and water should be flowing by daybreak on Friday.

Early Thursday morning, the original 36-inch main was repaired for a few hours before another leak in the same spot caused thousands of residents to be without water or with low water pressure once again Thursday.

“Repairs are still underway,” said WVAWC Spokesperson Laura Jordan. “It actually took the majority of the day to re-excavate the pipe down to where it was leaking and determine what was leaking and what type of repairs needed to be made.”

She said that a precautionary boil advisory will remain in affect for those that do have water, but the fill-up stations that have been available around Putnam and Kanawha counties will also operate at least until Friday morning.

“The stations are open overnight because they are unmanned, so all the bulk water stations are available overnight,” said Jordan. “Tomorrow morning as we do another update, we’ll make a decision how much longer distribution needs to occur.”

She acknowledged that Thursday night’s situation is very similar to Wednesday night’s, when the utility hoped to have water restored by the morning hours.

“We are on track for a very similar time frame as last night,” she said. “We expect to finish the repairs overnight tonight, and be able to return the pipes to service during the early morning hours and begin pumping water down toward the western end of the system.”

Higher elevation areas had no water Thursday, but water was pumped across the Kanawha River to keep some customers between Dunbar and Buffalo along the valley corridor in water.

Thursday afternoon, Kanawha County Commission President Kent Carper called for an investigation from the Public Service Commission in the wake of the outage. He cited a “lack of reliability and condition of infrastructure systems of our utility companies.”

Popular water fill station venues include Nitro High School, West Virginia State University, Dunbar Plaza and Andrew Jackson Middle School in Cross Lanes.