Water main installation project, crossing underneath the Susquehanna River begins


BERWICK, COLUMBIA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) — Pennsylvania American Water has begun installing a new 2,200-foot water main between Berwick and Nescopeck, by drilling 1,500 feet underneath the Susquehanna River.

The $3.5 million project is expected to last about 8 months. Those working on the project say water service will not be interrupted during that period. 

The current pipe that also runs under the Susquehanna River was placed in the 1960’s and has had two major breaks in the last decade that disrupted water service to Nescopeck.

Crews are using a method called “Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD)” that will allow the pipe to slip under the river and below a rock bed and then pop back out on the other side while using state-of-the-art equipment to monitor its journey across. 

The current water main will hopefully be able to stay in place to run as a back-up in case of any emergency. 

“We decided to go with the HDD method because it is the most cost efficient, most timely, and also it’s best for the environment because we don’t have to dam up the river or anything like that,” Richard Dudek, the project manager said.

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