Woodbridge High School students had an unexpected holiday today, but commuters had a miserable time as a water main break snagged traffic on Route 35 in both directions.
Middlesex Water Company trucks and equipment were evident at the break site, set up in the former A&P parking lot. A huge portion of the right southbound lane had been pried up to fix the main break.
A 'boil water' alert had been sent out by the company at 4 am. The area for the alert extended to Woodbridge Proper, where the break occurred, Avenel, Fords, and the Clara Barton section of Edison.
About ten sites near main break who receive water were deprived of it, but most of them had had their water restored by mid-morning, according to Bernadette Sohler, a vice president for the water company. She couldn't say if they were homes or businesses.
"We can't tell at this point what caused the break. It could be age. We've had breaks in that area in the past," said Sohler. The water mains in the area of date back to 1907, she said.
"This is another part of the main. You don't want to pull the whole main out of service because of the disruption it would cause," she said. "That area is a strong engineering focus for us."
Middlesex Water Company has been serving the area for 115 years, and it controls 800 miles of water mains, Sohler said.
She is hoping that the 16" pipe can be fixed late this afternoon.