View Saint John boil order Nov. 12, 2013 in a larger map

A large water main break Tuesday in Saint John caused problems in the city's north end and led to a boil water being issued that will remain in place until at least Thursday or Friday.

The break was reported shortly before 6 a.m. and affected customers east of the intersection of University Avenue and Woodhaven Drive.

Those affected were advised they should expect to be without water for most of the day.

City officials estimate about 1,400 customers are affected, but that does not include those at the University of New Brunswick Saint John campus or the Saint John Regional Hospital.

On Tuesday afternoon, an order telling people to boil water used for drinking or cooking was issued. It affects:

Saint John crews work to repair a watermain break and sinkhole in the city's north end

A boil water order is expected to be in place for those east of the intersection of University Avenue and Woodhaven Drive until at least Thursday or Friday, city officials say. (CBC)

  • University Avenue from civic 130 to Saint Point Road
  • Royal Parkway and Alpha Place
  • Polaris Court
  • Christopher Court
  • Varsity Street and Craig Crescent
  • Arlington Crescent
  • Tucker Park Road
  • Cranberry Hill
  • Fieldstone Drive
  • Sandy Point Road from civic 1099 (at University Ave.) to 2001 (at Kennebecasis Dr.)
  • Kennebecasis Drive, civic 1240
  • Westmount Drive

Water to be used for drinking, brushing teeth, making coffee or tea, or washing uncooked vegetables should be brought to a rolling boil for at least one minute and then cooled before use.

It is safe to use water for showers, bathing, washing dishes in hot water, or in a dishwasher.

The University of New Brunswick Saint John campus' operations had to be curtailed because of the water main break, said administrative vice-president Chris Callbeck.

"It is a reading day, so some students would be coming in to take advantage of studying," he said. "We also have our resident students who live here 24/7, our food service operation, so curtailing it meant we have operations that will still be going on."

The university also made other adjustments to help ease the impact on students, said Callbeck.

"For example, our residents, we had to bring [in] porta-potties and also water, we had to purchase water, bring water to the residences as well," he said. 

"The students, the majority of course were not here anyway, but the students were very understanding, as well as the staff."

The water main break also created a sink hole in the area. The eastbound lanes on University Avenue were closed and traffic was diverted to the westbound lanes.

The Department of Health, the Saint John Regional Hospital, the local fire department and Canadian Blood Services were all advised of the water main break.

Canadian Blood Services staged its blood clinic despite the lack of water. Washrooms were not available, but the leak did not cause a major disruption to the clinic's operation.