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Rash of Water Main Breaks Hits Salem

There have been four breaks in recent weeks, town manager says all for different reasons.

There have been four different water main breaks in Salem in recent weeks, which is a problem that often comes up during this time of year.

Town Manager Keith Hickey informed the Board of Selectmen of the breaks at Monday night's meeting.

Hickey said the breaks took place Nov. 22, 28, 30 and Dec. 2 at Hampshire Street, Cluff Road, South Broadway at Veterans Memorial Parkway and Shephard Avenue.

Hickey said the breaks all happened for "different reasons."

"There is typically a number of breaks during the fall when frost starts to settle in the ground," Hickey said. "The pipes themselves were not old enough to need to be replaced...It's typical for communities that have municipal water."

After a question on the Cluff Road break from Selectman Jim Keller, Hickey said in 2011 the town began checking for leaks and one was found in 2012 on Cluff Road and was scheduled for repair.

"The program for the leak detection did not start until after Cluff Road had been reconstructed," Hickey said.

Hickey said fixing the leaks has now been incorporated in the road program. Keller also asked for Hickey to provide the board with an idea of what fixing the water main breaks will cost for the town.

Riley Reid December 05, 2012 at 06:55 PM
I have a feeling it's going to be a long winter for our DPW with problems like this. All these years of not updating our infrastructure are going to start catching up with us. Mr Hickey says this is a common thing for this time of the year, but it seems to me we've had a mild start to winter and I don't see these news stories in other communities. I hope the workers took their time with the Shepard Ave break. Maybe a few days without water will help educate some to the importance of such matters.

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