Major water main breakage affects campus water pressure, discolouration

A major water main break on the University Endowment Lands is causing low water pressure and discolouration on campus.

Student Housing and Community Services (SHCS) informed students of the break in an email on Tuesday afternoon, saying that the break is impacting one of two water mains that provide water to the UBC campus.

In an emailed statement, Dave Woodson, managing director of UBC Energy and Water Services, said that University Endowment Lands crews are repairing the main with an expected October 15 completion date.

The cause of the break, located on 16th Avenue, remains unknown.

There should not be disruptions to water service on campus, SHCS said. Woodson added that the 16th Avenue water main has been isolated and all water to UBC is coming through the University Boulevard water main.

SHCS and Woodson said that water remains safe to drink, despite low water pressure, discolouration or cloudiness.

“Concern over turbidity/cloudy water was identified out of an abundance of caution,” Woodson said. “Anytime such a significant change in flows occurs it is possible that turbidity could occur. We are monitoring the situation and as of yet haven’t received any complaints of turbidity.”

While it’s unclear which buildings are affected, there is at least one case of discoloured water in Marine Drive Residence.

Energy and Water Services advised students to run water for one to five minutes to eliminate cloudiness, adding that the water “remains safe to use and drink.”

This is a developing story and will be updated as more information is available. This article was updated to include comment from Dave Woodson.