A large water main break at the intersection of University Avenue and Grant Street in Berkeley on Tuesday left dozens of homes without a water supply and closed the area to traffic while crews tried to make repairs.
A witness called in to report the break at about 12:30 p.m., and traffic was shut down completely in both directions on University Avenue between McGee Avenue and Martin Luther King Jr. Way.
Also, vehicles were not allowed to cross University Avenue on Grant Street, Deputy Fire Chief Donna McCracken said.
In addition, the break means that crews had to shut off water service to about 40 East Bay Municipal Utility District customers on Grant Street from University Avenue to Alston Way, EBMUD spokeswoman Nelsy Rodriguez said.
A cause for the break was not known as of 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, but the gushing leak started in a 12-inch cast iron pipe that was installed in 1933. EBMUD expects excavation and repair work to continue through the evening and possibly into the early morning hours, Rodriguez said.
A statement from EBMUD indicated that repairs should be completed by 2 a.m. Wednesday, but no time was given for when the streets might be reopen to traffic.