Watch CBS News

Water Main Break Snarls Traffic, Subway On Upper West Side

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- Service has been restored after a water main break snarled traffic and subway service on the Upper West Side on Sunday.

It happened at around 7:50 a.m. at 103rd Street and Central Park West. Service was restored by around 12:15 p.m.

Video from the scene showed water flowing onto the subway tracks.

Upper West Side Water Main Break
A water main break on 103rd Street and Central Park West on Jan. 19, 2020. (credit: Citizen App)

"It was just like a geyser, basically, coming out of the street," resident Adam Costello told CBS2's Dave Carlin. "It almost looked like there was an explosion, because there were bricks you could see."

"It's going to be inconvenient," resident Zoe Carril added.

Water pressure went down and for some residents, like Carril, water was turned off for a while during the emergency construction, Carlin reported.

"Going to have to leave my apartment, walk around, go to a friend's house," Carril said.

Nadine Boisseau said she was running late, only to find the C line subway train she relies out of service between 125th and 59th streets.

"It's really the pits, it's terrible. This is my subway," Boisseau said, adding when asked what her alternative would be, "Take a number 10 bus."

Service on the A/D lines was partially suspended while crews repaired the break.

On Monday, a major water main break elsewhere on the Upper West Side snarled train service on the 1, 2, 3 line and damaged nearby businesses. In a statement announcing the restoration of service following Sunday's break, the MTA called on the city to do more.

Photos: Water Main Break Snarls Subway Service

"This is the second time this week that a major city water main break flooded our system, requiring a partial service and inconveniencing our customers for too lengthy a period," the MTA said in a statement. "We hope this latest incident will spur quicker shut-off times by the city and a review of its aging system in hopes of avoiding similar situations moving forward."

Upper West Side Water Main Break
A water main break on 103rd Street and Central Park West on Jan. 19, 2020. (credit: Citizen App)

Residents said they are equally perplexed by the recent breaks.

"I'm just kind of shocked that they're happening so frequently," Carril said.

Weather has been cited as a possible factor, especially with all of the extreme temperature changes lately.

"When the Lincoln Center one happened it might've been because it was warm and got cold again," Costello said. "It's probably just the pipes are ancient. We need to spend some more money on infrastructure and replacing things."

Officials said Sunday's water main was close enough to the subway to get rattled a lot and that, combined with advanced age, may have caused the break. Department of Environmental Protection officials told Carlin when water mains break a section of the broken pipe is sent to a lab for analysis.

The investigations of the water main breaks could see results come back with different causes, but Carlin learned answers won't be available for a week or two.

"They got to straighten all this out because this is Manhattan," Boisseau said.


View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.