Water main breaks continue to snarl evening traffic

WASHINGTON – After an earlier water main break that blocked traffic for much of the day, River Road at Bradley Boulevard and Persimmon Tree Road in Potomac has reopened.

But a second, massive water main break that’s impacted traffic since Monday night continues to cause problems after already causing a brutal morning commute.

One lane of northbound traffic was getting past repair work on Connecticut Avenue between East West Highway/MD 410 and Jones Bridge Road. The 60-inch water main break had traffic completely blocked into Tuesday afternoon.

At the same time, the northbound lanes of the George Washington Parkway were closed at Route 123 for a serious crash in Virginia. Traffic was being diverted at Spout Run.

Earlier in the day, the water main repairs and crashes, including a hazardous materials spill along the Capital Beltway, combined to make an unusually rough commute even by D.C. standards.

The water main break underneath Connecticut Avenue released 60 million gallons of water from a 60-inch transmission line, which is larger than Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission had said previously, BethesdaNow.com reported.

The lone northbound lane on Connecticut Avenue reopened in the afternoon, according to BethesdaNow.com

WWSC has asked customers to conserve water for the remainder of the week. The conservation is needed to maintain enough pressure while the system recovers from the millions of lost water when the main broke in Chevy Chase Monday night.

The second water main broke in Montgomery County, closing a part of River Road that continued through the rush hour Tuesday evening.

The break happened at Newbridge Road, east of Potomac Village.

Also Tuesday morning, a tractor-trailer accident closed the Outer Loop of the Capital Beltway between the Interstate 270 spur and River Road causing major delays.

While the Outer Loop was closed, vehicles were diverted at Old Georgetown Road and alternative routes were jammed.

A hazardous materials crew called to the scene cleaned up a small leak that occurred when some of the truck’s 55-gallon drums of methyl ethyl ketone shifted during the accident and were crushed a bit.

The truck was hauling 35 of those drums, authorities say.

An accident also closed Rock Creek Parkway between the Memorial Bridge and 23rd Street. The parkway has reopened.

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