With water main break contained, New London mayor drops emergency declaration

New London - With a break in a main water distribution line contained and water pressure stabilized throughout the city, Mayor Daryl Justin Finizio said this evening that the city is no longer under a state of emergency.

“At 7:06 p.m. today, on the advice of Public Utilities Director Joseph Lanzafame, I lifted the State of Emergency which has been in effect since 8:13 a.m. this morning,” Finizio said in a statement. “I want to thank all City staff who responded so quickly and ably, and whose hard work allowed us to avert a catastrophic incident just in the nick of time.”

A major leak was discovered this morning in a 20-inch water transmission pipe at Bates Woods Park. Residents of an elderly apartment complex at 202 Colman St. were without water until late this afternoon.

Lanzafame said it could have been much worse.

“This was nearly a catastrophic system failure,” Lanzafame said in a statement. “If it had taken us an hour or an hour and a half longer to locate the break, we would have reached a point of no return. Residents and businesses throughout New London would have been without clean water for the next month.”

Lanzafame, in his statement, thanked the mayor for “decisive leadership,” and a team “who worked together to avert a true disaster.”

A citywide mandatory water restriction was lifted, and nearly all residents can return to normal water use. Residents of 202 Colman St. who had been without water earlier in the day have had their water restored, but have been ordered not to drink or cook with the water pending the results of bacterial testing.

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