Update: Five city workers suspended after water main breaks - KNOE 8 News; KNOE-TV; KNOE.com |

Update: Five city workers suspended after water main breaks in Monroe

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UPDATE:

MONROE, La. (KNOE 8 News) - The entire crew on the scene of a water main break in Monroe has been suspended.

Mitchell Acree, Water Distribution Superintendent, confirms to KNOE that all five crew members working on Bienville Drive as the water line failed Thursday have been suspended with pay. This includes a utility maintenance worker overseeing the crew as a labor leader.

Previous story:

MONROE, La. (KNOE 8 News) - Crews attempting to hook up a newly constructed home's water to the existing line, hit a problem Thursday.

"Whenever we were making the tap, part of the 16 inch water main failed. An approximate 8 foot section failed and split and therefore caused the water leak," says Water Distribution Superintendent Mitchell Acree.

A construction crew across the street caught the busted line on video, and more shocking to the witnesses than the rushing water, was the reaction of three of the city employees on site.

In the video, as water is pouring from the line and into a neighbor's home, three Monroe city employees can be seen taking pictures of the busted line, and of each other.

After water department leaders asked KNOE for the video and reviewed it themselves, the three workers in the video were suspended with pay while an investigation gets underway.

Mitchell Acree, who was not on scene when the line busted, tell us that other crew members were trying to shut off a valve at the time the video was taken.

"That video was whenever it was under pressure, the valve had yet to be isolated," says Acree, "those actions will not be tolerated by the City of Monroe." 

We were able to take a look inside the home, and the damage isn't as bad as one might think. The homeowner says only a few feet of flooring may need to be replaced. The City of Monroe confirms it will be paying for the damages.

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