On Monday May 7, 2018, the Philadelphia International Airport suffered a significant water main break, depriving the facility of water pressure to all terminals for several hours. Water services were eventually restored by 8 p.m., roughly three hours after the initial burst.
The main break, which was 24 in. in size, occurred under the economy parking lot. After water pressure was cut off, water fountains and toilets ceased to be functional. According to Water Department Commissioner Debra McCarty, approximately 4 million gal of water was lost.
Water authorities eventually closed the valves feeding into the main. The airport’s water system utilizes gravity in order to transport the water, as water is pumped from reservoirs into different storage tanks. From here, the water is ordinarily made available to various areas of the airport.
No flights were cancelled as a result of the main break, but all restaurants and vendors were without water for the duration of the incident.