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Residents faced with water outage

Some Monticello residents came home to an unpleasant surpriseWednesday when they found that their water wouldn’t come throughthe pipes.

The reason, city officials said, was a broken water main thatsupplied roughly the southern half of the city.

“We had an 8-inch old cast-iron line blow out on F.E. Sellers(Road),” said Public Works Director Bobby Sellman.

Sellman explained that some of the city’s water was being reroutedwhen workers began painting a tank.

“We were diverting water in different directions,” he said. “Thisis just an old town with a lot of old piping in it, and you’ll havethings like this from time to time.”

The water outage lasted about five hours while city crews worked tobreach the flow of the water and repair the pipe.

“We did get it fixed, and we had to bleed some fireplugs to getsome discolored water out,” Sellman said. “When that water rushesthrough there with that velocity, you’re going to have somediscoloration.”

As such, Monticello residents are asked to boil their water forprecautionary reasons through the weekend.

“We’ll need to boil water until I can get the samples to the HealthDepartment,” he said. “It should be Monday before we know anything.I feel good about it, but we’re required to do this.”

The outage also affected area hydrants, Sellman said, but luckilythat did not become an issue. The Monticello Fire Department didreport a fire early Thursday morning, but it was well after servicehad been restored.

The tank is still being repainted, Sellman said, and he asked cityresidents to bear with him as the project continues.

“We’ll be painting the tank for the next month and a half, and wecould experience problems,” he said. “That’s just part of it whenyou’ve got old lines and an old city like this.”