Water main break forces street, business closures in Middletown

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SAN DIEGO -- A water main break in San Diego's Middletown neighborhood Wednesday forced the closure of streets in the area and some nearby businesses.

Around 3:20 p.m., an 8-inch cast iron pipe broke near Emory and Hancock streets.

At 57 Degrees, a restaurant in the 1700 block of Hancock Street, several employees scrambled to push away the water flowing into the patio area.

“Creeping towards, coming into the building, it was going so fast," said owner Russell Kindom. "I walked out the door, water in the patio and it was rising. I thought we were in some really big trouble, so we got squeegees and brooms and six to eight people here, just pushing it out to the street."

The hard work paid off and they were able to keep the restaurant from flooding, but a small amount of water seeped into the kitchen of Fishmonger's Market, located in the same building.

The cause of the pipe break is still unclear, but city officials told FOX 5 it was likely because of old age. The cast iron pipe dates back to the 1950's.

A total of five businesses in the area were affected, including Kindom's, which he had no choice but to close for the night.

“Boy, I’d like to get some water going by tomorrow," Kindom said. "Hopefully they can get this repaired, I really don’t want to be shut down more than a night, we’ve got a lot going on."

City officials said the water was expected to be restored by midnight. It was not known when repairs on Hancock Street will be complete.

The incident was the fourth pipe break near the Midway District in a month.

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