IN - Ligonier goes dry as main line fails : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

IN - Ligonier goes dry as main line fails By Karen Balsley The Journal Gazette LIGONIER - The entire city of Ligonier was without water Saturday evening, after a water main break drained both of the city's water towers.

The break occurred about 4:30 p.m. at Silgan Plastics Corp., 910 Gerber Street, Ligonier police said.

All of Ligonier's 3,400 residents were without water.

In addition to Ligonier's two water towers, a 100,000 tank belonging to Silgan was drained. An estimated 1 million gallons of water emptied into the Elkhart River, Mayor Gary Bishop Sr. said.

Water might be restored today, police said. But that deadline could not be guaranteed.

"Chances are, it will be tomorrow before the system is back up," Bishop said. "If we're lucky."

A boil advisory will go into immediate effect when water service is restored and will be kept up until water test results are returned, Bishop said.

The cause of the break was not immediately known. However, work was being done throughout the night.

The computer system at WaterWorks malfunctioned after the 10-inch main broke, and computer repair persons were called in from Indianapolis, Bishop said.

The Ligonier Fire Department was prepared to call in firefighters and water-filled tanker trucks from neighboring communities, Chief Paul Pfenning said.

No fires were reported as of 9 p.m., he said.

Meanwhile, the loss of water affected businesses.

The manager of Freed's IGA on South Lincolnway estimated that more than 240 bottles of water had been sold since the main broke, said employee Tabitha Mast.

Charger House, a restaurant on the city's south side, bought several bottles of water so its employees could wash dishes by hand.

It closed 1 1/2 hours early because of the water shortage, owner Tom Janes said. He estimated the restaurant lost 150 customers from its usual Saturday night crowd.

-- Doris (, November 21, 2000

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