While walking, biking, or driving around Portland you may have noticed the Portland Water Bureau’s Maintenance and Construction teams working on hydrants or pipes underground. On any given day, the Portland Water Bureau’s Maintenance and Construction teams are working on a variety of projects to maintain our water infrastructure and ensure that we can depend on the continual delivery of safe drinking water. In the last fiscal year alone, crews completed more than 4,000 maintenance tasks.
So what exactly are they doing?
Repairing leaks and main breaks. Portlanders who notice issues with pipes or hydrants can report them to the Emergency Line at 503-823-4874, 24 hours, 7 days a week. Maintenance and Construction crews are on standby 24 hours a day to repair main breaks, which are more likely to occur during the winter season.
Replacing Aging and Obsolete Fire Hydrants. The City of Portland has more than 14,000 fire hydrants that are not only important fire suppression tools, they are also important portals for flushing, which helps us maintain and ensure water quality. Currently we have many hydrants throughout the City which are more than 100 years old, and parts to repair them no longer exist! Last year crews replaced more than 300 hydrants in the system and inspected or repaired another 2,500!
Replacing Water Mains. Portland Water Bureau proactively replaces our aging infrastructure, including replacing old water mains which are prone to breaks and leaks. In the last year, crews replaced more than 25,000 feet of old water mains.
Be our eyes and ears. If you notice leaking hydrants or broken water mains in your neighborhood, call the Emergency Line at 503-823-4874. If you experience discolored water or have questions about water pressure, contact the Water Line at 503-823-7525 or WBWaterLine@portlandoregon.gov from 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Monday to Friday.