A massive water main break in Los Angeles on Tuesday sent millions of gallons of water pouring out onto Sunset Boulevard and the campus of the University of California Los Angeles. Is this a sign that people who live in Los Angeles and, particularly, anyone who attends UCLA should take the hint and flee the area, heading to safer, drier ground, perhaps settling somewhere in Nebraska? Maybe. Maybe not. Everyone has to make their own decisions in life, that’s what we always say here at Post Nation.
What we do know: Lots and lots and lots of water flooded the area. How much water? An estimated 8 to 10 million gallons, according to the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. At its peak, about 75,000 gallons were gushing out per minute, creating this geyser:
Many people fled the area, though some students decided to go boogie-boarding, because if you have boogie boards and a flooded campus, you don’t exactly have much of a choice. (You can see the video of that here.)
The flooding impacted some of the most notable buildings on the campus, if by “notable” we mean “places where famous and successful athletic teams play.” (And that is what we mean in this case.)
“Unfortunately, Pauley Pavilion took quite a bit of water,” UCLA Chancellor Gene Block during a news conference. “It’s painful.”
School officials said that they would continue to assess the damage to Pauley and other structures Wednesday.
Some buildings were unaffected, as residence halls and the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center avoided any damage, Block said in a statement posted online. The school is open for business Wednesday, though a stretch of Sunset Boulevard remains closed (and cars remain trapped in some of the school’s parking garages).
Somewhat bizarrely, considering the flooding photos and the amount of water that inundated landmarks on the UCLA campus, no one was without water in the wake of the break.
While a few water pipes break or leak each day in Los Angeles, this type of massive break is rare, according to the water department. (The last one like this occurred in 2009.) An official with the water department told the Associated Press that it could take days to fully repair the pipe that burst.