OLEAN — It wasn’t rain water that flooded West State Street Friday afternoon, but a water main break that closed the street between 20th and 21st streets during one of the busiest times on a Friday afternoon.

“Calls started coming in about 4:30 p.m.,” said Bob Ring, Olean Public Works Director. “One of the first was the Sheriff’s Department. Our (Olean) police got here right away and started directing traffic and then our water crew started to mobilize and right now they’re trying to get the water shut off ... they’re being supported by the sewer crew.”

Eastbound traffic was rerouted by Olean Police officers from West State Street to South 26th Street, and westbound traffic was rerouted to South 19th Street.

The 8-inch water main break caused a lot of damage, according to Ring. It knocked the brick out of place that lies under the asphalt, and the water pressure, which is 90 pounds per square inch, damaged the pavement.

“We’ll get everything patched up and get traffic moving through here again,” Ring explained, although the break may not be fully repaired until Monday at the latest. “Some of these businesses will be without water so we’ll have to talk to them.”

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