UPDATE: FHTC main building spared major interior damage after water line break Featured

By Brandon Peoples and Chuck Samples July 11, 2018 966
A water main break developed around 6 p.m. Tuesday near 12th and Garfield in Emporia. A water main break developed around 6 p.m. Tuesday near 12th and Garfield in Emporia. Photo by Brandon Peoples/KVOE News

Flint Hills Technical College will do some unplanned excavating after a water line failure, but President Dean Hollenbeck says the situation could have been worse.

Hollenbeck said the first indications of problems came around 3:30 am outside the main building. There was some water that went through the east doors, but there does not appear to be much in the way of related damage.

Hollenbeck says there are no classes to adjust and an onsite workshop with Simmons shouldn't be affected. Some sidewalk will also have to be dug up to make the needed repairs.

At this time, it's unclear whether the water line failed early Wednesday or perhaps late Tuesday night.

6 am Wednesday

This week has not been kind to Emporia's water-related infrastructure.

Emporia Public Works have been working on a 16-inch main on 12th between Grand and Garfield after a line failure Tuesday. The department was first alerted to the break around 6 pm. Repairs continued well into the night.

Work on that water main essentially extends an ongoing project to replace a 20-inch main on West 12th a block to the east. Work has been ongoing the past several weeks on 12th from Prairie to Grand, and there was a significant water line split near 12th and Sunnyslope on June 20 earlier in the project.

Two other water mains failed during the day, with a break in the 400 block of Oak reported before noon and an 8-inch line splitting north of 15th and Luther around 4 pm.

Updates are pending with these repairs.

Late Tuesday night or early Wednesday, a water line apparently failed at the Flint Hills Technical College main campus near 18th and Graphic Arts. Water was seen flowing on the east side of the building, according to Lyon County Dispatch. A damage report is pending as well as word on the source of that water line issue.

Stay with KVOE, KVOE.com and KVOE social media for updates on these incidents.

10 pm Tuesday

Repairs continue on a 16-inch water main break that developed Tuesday evening in west-central Emporia. 

Emporia Public Works crews were first alerted to the break around 6 p.m. Emporia Street/Underground Utilities Supervisor Mike Dvorak tells KVOE News the break developed along 12th Ave. between Grand and Garfield and should only be affecting that block. No timetable has been given for how quickly the repairs will be made to the line but Dvorak says it will likely continue well into the night. 

Dvorak says it was the third water main break that crews responded to Tuesday. Around 4 p.m. crews worked to repair an 8-inch line with a split north of 15th and Luther. There was also a break reported in the 400 block of Oak Tuesday morning. Future water main breaks cannot be ruled out, especially with extreme heat continuing virtually through the rest of the week. Work also continues on a 20-inch water line replacement along 12th Ave. from Prairie to Grand that was estimated to be finished sometime in mid-July. Dvorak says Tuesday's break should not impact that project. 

6:30 p.m. Tuesday

The hot weather has brought more stress to Emporia's already frail water lines.

Emporia Public Works crews are busy working to repair a break on a 16 inch main near the intersection of 12th and Garfield. Public Works Director Frank Abart tells KVOE News that his crews first became alerted to the break around 6 p.m. Water could be seen flowing downhill along 12th Ave. and south along Garfield causing minor flooding on both sides of the street. Abart says an unknown amount of customers will be without water into the evening as repairs are made.

Public Works crews also tended to a break on a six-inch line north of 15th and Luther Ave. earlier Tuesday. Abart says once crews finished up there, they'd be working to shut down the water at the 12th and Garfield break. No word yet on how long it may take to repair.

The area has been no stranger to breaks recently. On June 20, a water main break developed near 12th and Sunnyslope. A break also occurred near 6th and Sunnyslope in early June a week after a separate split near 6th and Sherman.

In addition to the number of breaks, crews continue to work to replace a 20-inch pipe along 12th Ave. from Prairie to Grand. Stay tuned for updates on KVOE and KVOE.com.


Garfield Ave. south of 12th, looking to the north. Photo by Brandon Peoples/KVOE News


12th and Garfield water main break, looking to the west on 12th Ave. Photo by Brandon Peoples/KVOE News


Water main break north of 15th and Luther Tuesday afternoon. Photos by Brandon Peoples/KVOE News

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Last modified on Wednesday, 11 July 2018 09:55

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