STRONGSVILLE, Ohio — Pearl Road in Strongsville reopened in a limited capacity in time for the Thursday morning commute. Still, a portion of it remains closed to traffic as crews continue their work to repair a broken water main.
John Goersmeyer, public information officer for the Cleveland Division of Water, tells Fox 8 News that one lane of Pearl is open to northbound traffic only. He said crews are hoping to have a southbound lane open later in the day.
Also, the Cleveland Water-issued boil alert was lifted Thursday morning. Goersmeyer says that test results came back negative for the entire affected area.
Gushing water greeted commuters early Wednesday morning.
"This is a big one. It's one of our transmission mains -- a 30-inch main," said Alex Margevicius, Cleveland Water interim commissioner.
The break occurred at approximately 2:16 a.m. Wednesday. Pearl, except for the newly reopened part, is shut down between Albion and Whitney roads, where part of a lane collapsed. Traffic is being redirected.
Goersmeyer says that a pipe repair crew was initially unable to figure out if it was a 12- or 30-inch water main that broke. After a few hours, it was determined that the damaged pipe was indeed a 30-inch main.
The water rerouting process started shortly after the water was shut off. It was completed right around 6 a.m.
Cleveland Water had issued a precautionary Boil Advisory (now lifted) for the following areas along Pearl Road: south of Whitney Road; north of Lunn Road; east of Prospect Road; and west of Howe Road.
Folks in the aforementioned areas were advised to either use bottled water or follow the advisory to boil water before drinking, preparing food or cooking. Approximately 3,000 homes and businesses were affected.
"It looks clear, so I don't know what the problem is. I drink the water with this Brita, you know, with the filter inside. That's why I drink it," said affected Strongsville resident Richard Bedy on Wednesday.
His neighbors across the street bought five cases of bottled water just to be safe.
"If you have to boil, you gotta boil. We're gonna go out to eat, so that's why we're not gonna boil tonight," said Greg Harants on Wednesday.
Strongsville City Schools reopened on Thursday. Bottled water was on hand, however.
Margevicius says reinforcing wires that form the structure of the pipe appear to have corroded. The water main was built in 1964.
Cleveland Water says the repair project could take between three to five days to finish.
Stick with Fox 8 News and FOX8.com for more information on this story as it becomes available.