Water main break floods street, snarls traffic in New Jersey

GUTTENBERG, New Jersey (WABC) -- A water main break disrupted traffic, including New Jersey Transit bus routes, in Guttenberg Thursday morning.

The water main broke around 6 a.m. on John F. Kennedy Boulevard and 71st Street.

The break flooded the roadway and was causing low water pressure in the area.

Crews spent the morning working to get the water completely turned off, and a large amount of debris could be seen in the roadway.

One woman came outside to find her vehicle surrounded.

"When I wake up, we have no water, in the kitchen, the toilet," resident Albertina Penton said. "So I have to use my bottled water to do everything."

SUEZ water officials said service was restored to all but one apartment building and a few homes by 10 a.m., and that a water truck was en route to 7100 Boulevard East to help residents while repairs continued.

Full water service was restored by 1 p.m., but still, Town Hall and the municipal court were closed for the day.

The water main break disrupted residents in not only Guttenberg, but West New York and North Bergen as well.

"People need to go to work," area resident Mahmoud Mahmoud said. "They're unable to use their bathroom and their showers. They're unable to cook in the kitchen. They're unable to wash their face and do anything. This is their livelihood. This is how you know that water is so important."

Many of the mains in the older towns can be at least 100 years old. The age and new construction with road work often prove to be too much for the pipes that end up bursting.

Bus routes 128, 165, 166 and 168 were operating on a detour, and buses to Port Authority Bus Terminal were using 74th Street, Park Avenue, 69th Street, and Boulevard East.

Buses from PABT were using 70th Street, Park Avenue, 73rd Street and Boulevard East.

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