A water main break caused flooding in a number of houses in Campbell River Wednesday morning.
The break at South Alder Street and Niluht Road was noticed shortly before 10 a.m. and was reported to the City by a resident across the street.
Crystal Martin had just gotten out of the bathroom when she noticed water building downstairs.
She said she and her father, Steve, had gone out for breakfast earlier in the morning and hadn’t noticed anything amiss.
“Everything was good,” she said. “Everything was normal.”
But after she got home and showered, she came downstairs to find inches of water.
“I had to let the door open to let the water out and it all came rushing out,” she said.
Water flowing from the break toward their neighbours’ home had risen below the basement windows. It was cascading off a step to run downhill towards the back yard.
Another man next door said his basement had inches of water in it.
Martin’s father Steve said he’s lived in the area for 40 years and has never seen “anything like this.”
“We have a real disaster,” he said. “The storm drains can’t begin to handle this amount of water.”
By the time water had been shut off, a sink hole had formed in the road where the main had broken and the road was raised.
About five houses along South Alder Street were in the path of the water as it flowed downhill. Homes as far as Ash Street were seeing water from the break.
Betty Wagner, who lives in a basement suite on Galerno Road was in bed when she noticed the water coming into her suite.
She said she saw a big rush of water coming towards her. “Sacred the heck out of me,” she said. “Once it started coming in, it didn’t want to stop.”
Her upstairs and next-door neighbours were on hand to help clear the inches of water out of her home.
“We couldn’t keep up to it,” she said of the rising water level.
The City of Campbell River said that water has now been shut off and roads near the major water line break are closed.
“With water now turned off at this site, some properties will be without water,” a news release said. “Others will see low pressure or dirty water until the repair and flushing of the system is completed.”
Crews are on-site assessing the break and planning repairs.
Roads are closed at Alder Street South from Frances Road to Garnet Road and on Niluht Road from Kalmar Road to South Alder Street. The intersection at Marina Boulevard and South Alder Street has also been closed.
Residents with questions relating to changes in their water service are encouraged to all the Dogwood Operations Centre at 250-286-4033.
There is no word yet on what caused the water line to rupture.