NEWARK — Public works crews responded early Wednesday morning to another water main break but this one has little impact on the public, according to the city Department of Water and Sewer Utilities.

The break was reported just before 2 a.m. on Academy Street between Halsey and Broad streets near the Prudential Building.

The 8-inch service line is used only by the fire department, according to Mayor Ras Baraka. There is no impact to residential service or water pressure.

The break caused part of the ground to collapse as water poured from the break, according to RLS Metro Breaking News.

All downtown businesses are open and the water has been contained to the street. No buildings are flooded.

Baraka said there could be minor traffic issues as crews work to close underground valves to shut off the water main and stop the leaking.

A city water official said firefighters could use nearby hydrants not connected to the break if needed.

Water main break in Newark 8/17/22
Water main break in Newark 8/17/22 (RLS Metro Breaking News)

Century-plus pipes break

A break in a 72-inch main that dates back to the Civil War in Branch Brook Park on the Newark/Bellville border caused water pressure to drop and flooded out Mill Street, which is still closed as repairs continued. A boil water advisory was lifted Saturday.

A 30-inch main broke Thursday at 15th Avenue and 15th Street in the West Ward due to a pressure surge.

A water official was not sure of the age of the infrastructure in the downtown break. He said the Prudential Building dates back to the 1950s and the rest of the area was built in the 1930s. He doesn’t know if the pipes were replaced at either time.

Dan Alexander is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at

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