‘Small hole’ leads to Monroe draining 350,000 gallons from water tower

After discovering a leak in one of Monroe's three water towers, city officials drained about 400,000 gallons of water, said Gary Morton, director of public works. He said a small hole was discovered in the pipe and it will be repaired. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF
After discovering a leak in one of Monroe's three water towers, city officials drained about 400,000 gallons of water, said Gary Morton, director of public works. He said a small hole was discovered in the pipe and it will be repaired. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

City workers found a “small hole” in a water tower pipe after draining 350,000 gallons of water from one of the city’s three water towers.

Gary Morton, director of public works, told City Council members during Tuesday night’s meeting that a leak in the water tower near the Mound Cemetery on South Main Street was discovered earlier in the day when city employees completed their bi-weekly inspections of the water pressure.

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He said the tower, built in 1997, may have rusted over time. He said water was “raining pretty good inside” the tower on Tuesday.

The water, valued at about $1,085, was drained Wednesday and the site of the leak was found, Morton said Thursday morning. He said a metal patch will be welded onto the pipe.

Once the hole is repaired, city workers will begin the process of refilling the tank. Morton said after the tank is partially filled, chemicals will be added, then more water and more chemicals will fill the tower.

He hopes to have the water tower back online by Tuesday.

Council members questioned whether the 350,000 gallons of water could be saved and reused. Morton said there was no way to capture the water. He said the water will drain into a nearby detention basin.

Morton said police and fire officials were notified of the leak.

Monroe Mayor Jason Frentzel said there’s no risk of flooding to residents and no homes will be impacted.

Morton said residents shouldn’t notice lower water pressure unless there’s a “major fire” in the city.

The city’s two other water towers are located on Britton Lane and North Main Street.

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