After a pipe that connects the city's water main to the aqueducts burst Thursday evening, crews worked through the night to patch up the system so the leak wouldn't disrupt water services. However, more work is needed next week to finish the repair.
The leak was discovered when water began pooling in a field off Payran Street on Thursday evening. City and county water officials had to shut down Payran to traffic as they investigated the leak, which was finally fixed shortly after 4 a.m. Friday morning.
"The pipe was just old and it broke. That pipe is probably 55 years old," said Michael Thompson, assistant general manager of the Sonoma County Water Agency, on Friday morning. "We worked through the night to fix it, because the City of Petaluma really needed this pipe back online today."
He said leaks of this nature happen two to three times a year across the county, and are usually easy to fix by patching the hole with a new weld. However, the Petaluma pipe was so degraded, the weld would not hold.
"We were able to clamp it," Thompson said. "But we'll need to come back next week to finish the repair."