Los Angeles Pipe Rupture: A Look at the Numbers
By Mario Sevilla
Wed Jul 30th, 2014 2:24pm America/Los_Angeles
LOS ANGELES (AP) — 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 8 million gallons spilled from the pipe over nearly 3½ hours, at a rate of 38,000 gallons per minute.
— 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.
— More than 730 vehicles were in two subterranean garages that flooded, and about half the vehicles were totally submerged, UCLA says.
— The amount of water that spilled is enough to fill more than 500 average-sized backyard swimming pools, or about 200,000 bathtubs.
— It’s enough water to serve more than 52,500 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 per 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. About 2 percent of that total was lost Tuesday.
— 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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