Los Angeles pipe rupture: A look at the numbers


July 31, 2014 11:45AM (UTC)

A torrent of water spewed from a nearly century-old pipe that burst in Los Angeles, shutting down a section of Sunset Boulevard and inundating the campus of UCLA. Here are some of the numbers behind Tuesday's rupture:

— Some 20 million gallons had spilled from the pipe before the flow was stopped late Wednesday night. At its peak on Tuesday, the pipe was spewing 75,000 gallons a minute and it was still putting out 1,000 gallons a minute a day later. Officials say it will take at least another 48 hours to complete repairs.

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— The water main is a 30-inch riveted steel pipe that delivers water at a high velocity from Upper Stone Canyon Reservoir. It was installed in 1921.

— About 960 vehicles were in two subterranean garages that flooded, and many were totally submerged, UCLA says.

— The amount of water that spilled is enough to fill more than 1,000 average-sized backyard swimming pools, or more than 400,000 bathtubs.

— It's enough water to serve more than 100,000 Los Angeles Department of Water and Power customers in a single day.

— When the pipe is operational, water flow is estimated at 75,000 gallons a minute.

— The Department of Water and Power's aging, 7,200-mile water system provides approximately 500 million gallons of water to customers each day.

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— In 2009, a team of analysts found 90 percent of the department's ruptures happened in cast-iron pipes that were corroded.

— When Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state drought emergency in January, he asked California residents and businesses to voluntarily reduce their water consumption by 20 percent.


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