MELROSE—There were reports of two eater man breaks on Melrose Avenue on Thursday, July 9.

The first occurred at  around 3 a.m., when a water main burst on Melrose and Gower Street. It was an 8-inch cast iron water pipe. The street was flooded and closed for repairs. Water services were discontinued till 2 p.m. About five customers were affected at the time.

Water main break causes flood on Melrose Avenue. Photo courtesy B fine @Ben_Fine1
Water main break causes flood on Melrose Avenue. Photo courtesy B fine @Ben_Fine1

The second was a 12-inch pipe on Melrose and Vermont that burst around 5 a.m. A garage was flooded due to the incident.  Water services will start again at 4 p.m.

Los Angeles Department of Water and Power official, Ellen Chang, says that there are many factors that lead to water main breaks. The age of the pipe, previous leaks, soil type, and mechanical trauma can affect the pipe. The water main that burst around 3:30 a.m. on Thursday at Paxton and Foothills Blvd. of Lake View Terrace was due to shearing of a fire hydrant.

There is no estimate of how much water was lost, but Chang says, “For a city our size, it is not unusual to have the number of water main breaks we do. The average now is about 3 a day.”

The LADWP has a schedule for repairs of these city pipes.

They also have a five-year plan to increase rates for water and power. This is mostly for infrastructure, like fixing pipes that have aged a century. The LADWP would also like to start depending on a local water supply. They want to work on storm water capture and water recycling especially with the drought.

The plan will increase the rate by 2.4 percent annually for 5 years, or about $1.95 a month, for customers who use a low amount of water and power. At the end of five years, they will be paying about $9.75/month more for the utilities. About 75 percent of the users fall in this category.

Average users will see an increase of 3.4 percent, or $4.75/month. High users would see a 5.4 percent increase, or about $17.64 more each month.

To read more on the water rate hike, visit