Two broken water mains affect service to parts of midtown and southern Kansas City

Two water main breaks left homes and businesses without water or with low water pressure Sunday in the Waldo area, Midtown and all the way to far south Kansas City.

“It was so widespread — we got calls from so many areas,” said Kansas City Water department spokeswoman Brooke Givens. “We don’t know how many people were affected.”

Many businesses reportedly shut down or had to reduce services throughout the day as the water department searched for the most damaging break — a 30-inch concrete main near 9900 Blue River Road.

The calls began coming in about 7:30 a.m., Givens said, and it took awhile to find the rupture because it was in an isolated area.

An earlier break of a 24-inch pipe at 3340 W. Coleman Road affected 35 customers. That break happened about 3:30 a.m.

Late Sunday afternoon, the water department reported it had isolated the breaks, closing valves that enabled most of the affected areas to restore water pressure.

Crews working on the breaks estimated that all customers should have full water service restored by Monday morning, Givens said.

The recent weather, with temperatures fluctuating between a deep freeze with ice and rapid thaws, can strain pipes. And with many pipes more than 100 years old, age is a concern, the crews said.

Robert A. Cronkleton gets up very early in the morning to bring readers breaking news about crime, transportation and weather at the crack of dawn. He’s been at The Star since 1987 and now contributes data reporting and video editing.