While walking, rolling, or driving around Portland you may notice the Portland Water Bureau’s Maintenance and Construction crews.
So what exactly are they doing?
On any given day, the Water Bureau’s Maintenance and Construction teams are working around the city to maintain the city’s water system – from underground pipes to above-ground fire hydrants.
In the last fiscal year alone, crews completed more than 4,000 maintenance tasks.
Fixing leaks and main breaks. Portlanders who notice issues with pipes or hydrants can report them to the Emergency Line by calling 503-823-4874, 24 hours, seven 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 – or, as the Water Bureau calls, “main break 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. Many hydrants throughout the city are more than 100 years old, and parts to repair them no longer exist. Last year crews replaced more than 500 hydrants in the system!
Replacing water mains. Portland Water Bureau proactively replaces old pipes and other infrastructure, including replacing water mains which are prone to breaks and leaks. The oldest pipe replaced in 2016 was 114 years old.
Be Our Eyes and Ears
Notice a leaking hydrant or broken water main 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.