Millions of gallons of water gush into the air after main breaks on Falls of Neuse Road

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RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Portions of Falls of Neuse Road in Raleigh are blocked off due to a gushing water main break.

The water main break occurred around 3 a.m. in the Wakefield area located on Falls of Neuse Road and the 2800-block of Wakefield Pines Drive.

The water was shooting up more than 20 feet in the air, above the traffic signals, when CBS 17’s crew arrived on the scene.

Officials on scene said that as of 7 a.m., more than 2 million gallons of water had been released after the break. The water valve was finally located a few blocks away and turned off just before 8 a.m. A massive hole filled with water is now visible on the road.

Water is finally off. Valve was located several blocks away. Now there’s a huge hole in the middle of the street at Falls of Neuse Road and Wakefield Pines Drive. @WNCN pic.twitter.com/ylkGyMgcLa— Jamiese Price (@ThePriceReport) June 6, 2019

Amber Brantley was surprised by what greeted her as she made her way to work Thursday morning.

“I thought, wow,” she said.

It’s a reaction felt by drivers, neighbors and business owners in the Wakefield community after getting a look at the huge water main break.

It was a site to see, but a major inconvenience. Eighty residents at a nearby senior living complex woke up without water.

Businesses also felt the blow.

“We are having to close the office today and not see patients because we don’t have water,” said Kori Revels who works at a nearby dentist office.

CBS 17 wanted to know what caused the line to break.  

“Looking at the way the valve cover has blown off, [it’s] usually it’s a bolt failure,” described Ed Buchanan, a senior utilities analysts with the City of Raleigh. “We usually know where all of our valves are but it’s the one that are on private systems that we don’t know as well.”

Officials said bolt failure is common because the soil in the Triangle is corrosive to the metal they use in the joints. The city tries to use metals that won’t corrode, but with more than 2,500 miles of water lines it’s not always clear what’s being laid by private contractors.

While work continues on the break, the 2800-block of Wakefield Pines Drive is closed between Falls of Neuse Road and Spruce Tree Way. Crews expect to have the hole filled by 6 p.m. but they will still need to pave it.

Officials said there are two detours around the area:

Southbound traffic on Wakefield Pines Drive should turn right onto Spruce Tree Way and continue to Falls of Neuse Road.

East and westbound traffic on Falls of Neuse Road should turn onto Spruce Tree Way, then left onto Wakefield Pines Drive.

Anyone traveling in the area should expect traffic delays.

Customers in the area should not experience any interruption of service, officials said.

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