NW road expected to be closed through Friday due to historic water main break

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Washington DC -- Utility repair crews aren't expected to finish a small section of MacArthur Boulevard in Northwest until Friday.

A 30-inch water main break on Wednesday was caused by the failure of a pipe that had been in use since the 1860's according to DC Water.

A replacement part had to be shipped in from out of state and when crews began the installation on Monday rain cut them short. Rain is also expected to delay repair efforts on Tuesday with work not resuming until Wednesday.

Some neighborhood residents are willing to cut the crews some slack.

"They've been working at it basically night and day," said Phil Tang. "The hole was 30-feet across [last Wednesday] so I don't really blame them for the delay."

Others are taking advantage and biking, running or walking their dogs down the middle of the street that isn't under repair but still closed.

But there are many people who will be happy when the road reopens to traffic again.

"It's a pain to park and a bunch of the roads are closed so even though we can park [in a nearby] community to get there you have to go weird ways," said Carrie Delane.

Sally and Rob McLeod live nearby on Fox Hall Lane. They've seen a lot more traffic than usual causing backups and confusion.

"It's really messing up traffic, it's really backing up traffic on Fox Hall and rush hour has been crazy," said Rob McLeod.

The initial break did cause some property damage but no cars were washed away by the water and no injuries were reported.

The main is said to be older than anyone alive, in use for more than 150 years before giving out last week.

DC Water has not released an estimate on how much it will cost to replace the pipe.