Water main breaks near Saranac Lake Middle School

Village of Saranac Lake workers check a water main break near the Saranac Lake Middle School gym Thursday night. (Enterprise photo — Chris Knight)

SARANAC LAKE — A water main break near the Saranac Lake Middle School sent village Department of Public Works crews into action Thursday night.

DPW Superintendent Jeff Dora said the village was notified of the break around 9 p.m. It took place near the corner of the Middle School gymnasium and just outside a chain link fence that runs along the LaPan Highway side of Petrova field.

When the Enterprise visited the site around 9:45 p.m., water was gushing out of the ground and downhill, flooding a baseball field and filling up the drainage ditch that runs along the highway.

Dora said it took his crews until a little after 10 p.m. to locate the closest shutoff valve and stop the water from flowing. He said he didn’t know what triggered the break.

“I won’t know until we dig it up and repair it today,” he said. “It didn’t really affect anybody. It’s a line that feeds out through French Hill, but we’ve got other lines that backfeed that area, so it wasn’t like we needed to fight it all night long, so we’ll just repair it during the daylight.”

“This is one of the few times that it actually went in our favor. That doesn’t happen very often.”

Saranac Lake Central School District Building Superintendent Vernon James was on the scene, checked the Middle School’s water pressure after the break was stopped and said it was fine, Dora said.

“The school’s water supply is not affected by the break. We will be in session (today),” Superintendent Diane Fox wrote in an email Thursday night.

Low water pressure from the break triggered a fire alarm at 622 Lake Flower Ave., Coakley High Peaks Ace Hardware, around 10 p.m. Saranac Lake Volunteer Fire Department members stood by until the alarm was reset.

Dora said the water will be checked for bacteria but he doesn’t anticipate a boil water order would be issued.

He said he would be moving his crews from a project on Keene Street to fix the water main break today.