Digging for ruptured water lines

A backhoe digs Thursday morning on Happy Valley Road near Happy Valley Farms. (Messenger photo/Josh O'Bryant)

Crews have restored water, but pressure remains low, in Rossville’s Mission Ridge Road area, where a water main broke Wednesday afternoon. The break is affecting about 800-900 households.

Meanwhile, crews are working more water line breaks that occurred Thursday morning in the area around Happy Valley Farms and Ridgeland High School. The high school is dismissing students early today due to water problems.

Walker County Coordinator David Ashburn said a crew has been working non-stop on the Mission Ridge Road water line break for more than 16 hours. The break is near the intersection of Mission Ridge and McFarland roads, near the BP convenience store and gas station.

The crew is using hydrants to flush dirt and debris out of the water lines. Customers who live on hills will see a slower return on water pressure, Ashburn said.

For the Happy Valley Road area, a private company is seeking out and marking locations where it is safe for crews to dig, Ashburn said. The private company is used because it has Environmental Protection Division monitoring. Officials believe there are 5-6 locations where a water line has broken, he said.

Water restoration in that area is expected today, Ashburn said.

Ashburn said hundreds of thousands of water have been lost due to the water line breaks in the Mission Ridge and Happy Valley road areas. Repairs and costs of lost water will be expensive, he said.

He said the current extreme drought has contribute greatly to the breaks: as the ground dries and shifts.