Adult store among 3 shops flooded by water main break

EVERETT — Three businesses in the 3400 block of Broadway Avenue got a soaking around midnight on Wednesday when a 12-inch-wide city water main burst.

City of Everett public works crews repaired the line and restored service by 7:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Later that morning, the Lovers adult novelties store, Best Acupuncture and Everett Self Storage were drying out. Broadway had reopened fully, but to reach the faulty pipe, crews had to shut down a block of 34th Street west of Broadway.

What exactly caused the cast-iron water main to rupture was not known, though its age may have been a factor, city spokeswoman Kate Reardon said.

“The pipe was from the 1950s, so we’re looking at the fact that it was an older pipe,” Reardon said.

Crews fixing the line had to excavate, pump out water and replace a section of pipe, the city reported. About 10 properties in the area were without water while the fixes were ongoing.

The block of 34th Street west of Broadway was expected to reopen today, after crews finished replacing a strip of asphalt removed for repairs, Reardon said.

Everett has had 12 water-main breaks this year, she said. Four, including Wednesday’s, involved 12-inch pipes. Eight others involved smaller pipes of 3 to 8 inches.

Public works officials have reported that it’s normal for Everett to have about a dozen water main breaks in any given year, a number that’s typical for similar-size cities. Businesses that suffer damage can submit claims to the city for reimbursement.

In March 2011, a 12-inch water main in the 2500 block of Hewitt Avenue broke and spewed about a million gallons of water, causing damage to several businesses. The city reported that pipe to be about 70 years old. Often, water pipes can last for 75 years or longer.

Noah Haglund: 425-339-3465; nhaglund@heraldnet.com.

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