UPDATE: Tennessee American Water (TAW) will switch water flow from the old pipe to the new pipe that was installed earlier this week along Hixson Pike at Lupton Drive.

The switch will happen on Saturday, August 11, from about 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

TAW spokeswoman Daphne Kirksey says customers in the area highlighted in the map below will have low water pressure or no water while the process is being completed.

“We apologize for the disruption in service,” said Tennessee American Water engineering manager Kurt Stafford. “We know residents rely on their water service in their daily lives. We chose to do this in Saturday to avoid disrupting the neighborhood school schedules on a weekday.”

Kirksey says if customers experience air or discolored water after the water is turned back on, customers can run the COLD tap until the water runs clear. She says an outside spigot or bathtub faucet is recommended since it creates more flow.

TAW finished repaving some of the road this week but Kirksey says the bulk of it will happen next week and could continue into the following week.

Customers were notified about the outage Friday afternoon as soon as lab results were received indicating the pipe was sufficiently cleaned and ready to be connected to homes. Tennessee American Water used its mass notification system to contact customers via phone, text, email or any combination of these, based on the information the customer has provided the water provider. All customers are encouraged to make sure that their contact info is up to date and can do so on the company website or by calling the customer service center at 1-866-736-6420.

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PREVIOUS STORY: A permanent fix is in the works for a water main break on Hixson Pike.

Tennessee American Water (TAW) officials have decided to replace the old water main with a new one. The old water main broke twice Wednesday, which is 8-inches long. The new pipe will be 12-inches.

Work will begin as soon crews get the parts needed for the job. TAW expects the project to be completed in two weeks.

Channel 3 spoke to several people who live and work around the area who say this is something they've wanted for a while.

“It's a little bit ridiculous that it keeps breaking and they can't seem to fix it properly,” said resident, Justin O’Brian.

Water rushed onto Hixson Pike two separate times Wednesday, forcing part of the road to close. Our cameras were rolling the second time when an outsourced contractor poured concrete mix from a truck into the ground after the original water main break was repaired. Minutes later, the water main broke again and a pool of water surfaced. TAW officials say it was a mistake.

“I think it was just probably operator error from what I understand, talking to the supervisor on-call that they may have tripped a line,” said TAW spokeswoman, Daphne Kirksey.

But this isn't the first this has happened. Officials say this is the same water main that broke in January. We're told the age of the piping may be a factor.

“There's no guarantee with these pipes. This one is a little older. It's from 1954,” said Kirksey.

After the water cleared, engineers found a large split in the water main. It's not clear how much repairs will cost.

“When you have an emergency type repair like this it's something that we have built into our budget,” said Kirksey.

In the meantime, drivers and homeowners are forced to deal with new traffic pains.

"Makes it hard for me to get in and out of my driveway and it also makes it hard for me to park,” said Benjamin Clark.
           
The frustration is something TAW officials say they understand.

“You know it's certainly something that is an inconvenience to anybody that's ever experienced a main break but our priority is to always be safe and then fix it as quickly as possible,” said Kirksey.

Traffic is still down to one northbound lane. We’re told more traffic changes are possible.

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