River Road Flood: What Happens Next

Tuesday, December 23, 2008 11:33 AM

A water main rupture near the intersection of River Road and Fenway Drive in Bethesda has disrupted traffic and caused water outages in parts of Montgomery County. Here's a look at what to expect.

OUTAGES The break caused "widespread water outages" in school buildings across lower Montgomery County, officials said, affecting the heating system in some cases. Schools and some businesses shut down because of low water pressure. Utility workers have now restored water service to all customers in southern Montgomery County.

REPAIR SCHEDULE The affected section of River Road, between Seven Locks Road and Bradley Boulevard, may take several days to repair, said Kellie Boulware, a spokeswoman for the Maryland State Highway Administratiom.

TRAFFIC DISRUPTIONS River Road is closed to traffic between Seven Locks Road and Bradley Boulevard. See traffic updates.

RESCUE EFFORTS At least 15 motorists were trapped in the rushing water. Most were able to extricate themselves, but five others had to be rescued, including a woman and child who climbed into a wire basket lowered from a helicopter.

SAFETY Officials said water quality has not been degraded by the break. Health questions can be addressed to Montgomery County's 24-Hour emergency hotline at 240-777-4200.

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