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August 1, 2014

Crews fix Fairview Heights water line break

Parts of Fairview Heights had low water pressure Friday morning because of a broken 12-inch water line that cracked while the Illinois Department of Transportation was replacing a storm sewer line.

The water line was repaired by 1:30 p.m.

Fairview Heights gets its water from O'Fallon, so its neighbor is responsible for fixing the break. O'Fallon City Engineer Dennis Sullivan said workers were aware of the concrete water line when they were installing the 30-inch storm sewer and they were being careful not to hit it. But it broke anyway.

"It's made of asbestos concrete and they're known to be as fragile as can be," Sullivan said. "Those things look for any excuse to break."

Fairview Heights leaders said the work site where the pipe was ruptured is on St. Clair Avenue at St. Clair Road.

Sullivan said the repair seems to have held without further damage and water customers should have no further problems.

Sullivan said there is no threat to residents because of the asbestos component to the pipe's makeup. He said the inside of the pipes are coated with a lining that keeps the potentially harmful material out of the water supply. Asbestos is a fiber that is potentially harmful when it's floating in the air and breathed in.

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