Rotterdam struggling with water main breaks, boil water orders


ROTTERDAM, NY (WRGB) Some households in the town of Rotterdam are under a boil water advisory after another water main break - crews just cleaned up an even bigger one a week ago. The town says aging pipes are a main factor in the multiple breaks.

"We do have spots where there's old infrastructure..."

It's a problem, Matt Lupi says, that's hard to prevent on old town roads.

"It's a normalcy, it's going to happen when you get your big main pops," Lupi, the town water and sewer supervisor, told CBS6.

He says while Sunday night's 8-inch water main break is not on the same pipe as last week's larger one, it is related.

"The fluctuation of us turning those valves on and off definitely is what the cause was of this one."

Rotterdam's Town Supervisor never got back to us about this issue, but speaking with Lupi on Hollywood Ave. on Monday, where 21 homes are still under a boil water advisory, CBS6 learned that a permanent fix for the ongoing problem is pricey.

"Getting a hold of the state, getting grant money, anything will help, it's big money doing these types of jobs here," Lupi said.

"Aging infrastructure continues to plague our upstate communities."

Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara is a civil engineer and resident of Rotterdam. where he says boiling your water is becoming too normal.

"This system here is more than 60 years old and I can tell you the life expectancy of water mains and systems like this are only 20 to 30 years," Santabarbara said.

The Assemblyman currently leads a road improvement project in Amsterdam. He says he's already requested state officials come to Rotterdam to determine how much funding is needed to upgrade the water system.

"We need to get ahead of these problems and stop looking at doing band aids like this and making a bigger investment so we can have long-term reliability on these systems that are so important to our communities."

Santabarbara's office is just across the street from Hollywood Ave. Town officials say residents there are still under a boil water advisory, a final round of water testing will be completed Tuesday.

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