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Water restored for most, but Pinellas County Utilities customers should still boil water

Residents near Belcher Road where a 48-inch water main burst Thursday evening were still without water by early Friday. Water pressure is still low for other Pinellas County residents, and water should still be boiled, officials said.

It isn't yet known when the water system will be completely repaired, said Tim Closterman, a spokesman for Pinellas County. Work could continue through Sunday.

"It's a massive leak," Closterman said.

Access to water has been restored for most residents. But all Pinellas County Utilities customers south of Belleair Road should still boil their water and conserve water until further notice, Closterman said. Residents north of Belleair Road with low water pressure should do the same.

The only exceptions are the cities of St. Petersburg and Dunedin because they use their own water supplies. Largo, Seminole and Pinellas Park use county water. Some other cities, including Clearwater, get some water from the county's connection to the regional supplier, Tampa Bay Water.

By early Friday, crews were still pumping water out of the large hole where the old system broke. Once they can get in the hole, which won't be before noon on Friday, they can evaluate the water main to determine what happened, Closterman said.

Crews working Thursday on replacements for the aging water pipes reported the underground pipeline break at 142nd Avenue N and Belcher Road.

Crews will be out at the main all day and tonight to fix it, he said.

Water should be brought to a full raging boil for at least one minute to kill most germs, according to Pinellas County Utilities. Use boiled water for preparing food. Unboiled water should not be ingested but is okay for washing hands, bathing and shaving.

Water restored for most, but Pinellas County Utilities customers should still boil water 12/24/10 [Last modified: Saturday, December 25, 2010 6:57pm]

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