Downtown Tulsa Intersection Closed By Water Line Break

Friday, December 13th 2013, 8:43 am
By: News On 6

Crews with Tulsa's water department are working to repair a water main break that left several businesses in the dark and some cars in a garage underwater.

The city says it could be a while before they open the intersection up at 4th Street and Cheyenne Avenue. It's expected to be closed until they can dig up the pipes that burst Friday morning.

Crews in nearby businesses have teams cleaning up the muddy mess left behind.

"I've got a good lunch crowd, but today you see it still looks like it had been bombed, looks terrible," said Guillermo Rojas, of Casa Laredo.

Rojas isn't opening his Latin grill in the Adams Building any time soon. The restaurant's power was off Friday and water was being pumped out of his basement.

"We're going to lose everything that is in the walk-in cooler and the freezers," Rojas said.

On any given Friday, Casa Laredo in downtown Tulsa fills up with 60 to 70 tables for lunch. Outside street crews are digging up the intersection because of the early morning water main break.

Two pipes burst, causing water to rush into nearby businesses.

It was just after 3:30 a.m. when folks at the Mayo Hotel realized there was a lake in their downstairs garage basement.

"It was pretty eye-opening, as you can see the cars behind me, they were almost submerged in water," said Jake Baldwin, with the Mayo Hotel.

Gushing water from the broken pipe came within feet of critical equipment that keeps the hotel operating.

"It was crucial that our team was able to jump on it when they did to take care of the problem," Baldwin said.

Hotel rooms upstairs are sold out this weekend.

"The Mayo never closed, and we're still open and ready to do business tonight," said Baldwin.

The Casa Laredo wasn't so lucky.

"It's a big loss for us to be closed on Friday, closed through Christmas. I have some reservations, I have to turn down the reservations," Rojas said.

City crews will be working around the clock to get the water back on and the street patched up.

"We were hopeful that it wouldn't be that bad, that that wouldn't happen, but that's not the case," said utilities manager John Richardson.

The Tulsa Downtown Parade of Lights, which starts at 6 o'clock Saturday evening has a new route, thanks to the water main break.

12/13/2013 Related Story: Downtown Tulsa Parade Of Lights Route Changed Due To Water Line Break