NORTH ANDOVER, Mass. (WHDH) -
Several people felt a shaking before a water main break in North Andover flooded streets and homes in the area.
"I just heard this low rumbling. I thought we were having an earthquake. Then I thought we loaded the washing machine incorrectly. But then it turns out it's a water main break," said one resident.
The water filled the streets, pouring out of the water main valve, manhole covers and even openings in the street.
"Right now we're recommending not using the water and stay away from standing water for the potential of contamination," Jeff Coco, director of the North Andover Emergency Management.
Coco said about 150 families primarily located in the neighborhood between Route 114 and Route 125 are being affected the break. Most are left without water and have to handle with flooded basements.
"We're assuming it's contaminated because it's coming up from the sewer system. That's why it's coming up through basement, bathrooms and basements and stuff like that," said Lt. John Weir of the North Andover Fire Department.
Most of the water on the street has drained away but it's the high water table, the water under the ground, that continues to cause problems. Roads near the break are closed to traffic to help prevent any potential sinkholes.
"What we have to do now is wait basically for some of the saturation to drain off from the street. We're also waiting for crews to come in who can tell us where we can open the street up appropriately without doing further damage to gas line and buried electrical," Coco said.