CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Repairs are complete along East Independence Boulevard following a water main break Tuesday afternoon but officials said traffic would be a mess in the area throughout the day Wednesday.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg police said one lane of outbound Independence Blvd. was closed at Village Lake Drive Tuesday afternoon due to a 12-inch water main break.
Overnight, crews were able to fix the water main and repave the road, but the lane was still closed while the pavement dries, and is expected to stay closed into the evening rush hour.
Drivers are asked to use Monroe Road or Idlewild Road as alternate routes.
The water was shut off around 2 p.m. Tuesday, but officials said the water pressure pushed up the pavement. They brought in heavy equipment to make repairs.
Some businesses nearby closed early Tuesday because customers could not get to them.
"I've never seen anything like it before. We’ve seen snow. We’ve seen ice but we’ve never seen a water main break," said Robbie Jordan at Queen City Appliances.
Some restaurant customers didn't find out several businesses were closed until they went to get dinner.
"Everything is still shut down, so I'm thinking, ‘Wow, what's going on?’" Dave Owens said.
From Channel 9 Skyzoom, Independence Boulevard looked like a river, with water rushing across the highway. The situation also led to a sinkhole forming, splitting the pavement.
Lane closures led to miles of backups during rush hour.
It's not the first time a big water main break has caused problems on the major road. A similar break in August 2016 close to Tuesday's caused a huge sink hole.
We found there have been five water main breaks in the area since 2016.
Charlotte Water says the incidents are not related and it has "multiple water pipes, valves, hydrants, and services under East Independence Boulevard. Pipes ... can leak for various reasons."
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