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Water Main Break in Venice Prompts Street Closure

A water main break near the Venice Canals is prompting authorities to close off a portion of eastbound South Venice Boulevard as crews work to minimize damage.

A water main break near the Venice Canals prompted authorities to close off a portion of South Venice Boulevard on Friday afternoon as firefighters worked to pump the water out of an underground parking structure.

The water main burst about 12:45 p.m. near the intersection of Carroll Canal and Dell Avenue, officals said. It started flooding the underground parking garage of a two-story residential complex in the 200 block of South Venice Boulevard, said Capt. Milton Urquilla of the Los Angeles Fire Department's Venice-based Fire Station 63.

A fire engine and several fire trucks were at the scene using pumps to create a draft to keep the water from rising in the garage until the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power could shut down the water main, Urquilla said. About 18 to 20 inches of standing water was in the garage and seeping over onto adjacent stairwells.

No injuries were reported.

Eastbound traffic on South Venice Boulevard was blocked at Pacific Avenue and the street also was cordoned off at Dell Avenue.

Urquilla said about 2:30 p.m. that the water main was shut off by the DWP and the situation was improving.

Battalion 4 Chief Michael Bowman said the 6-inch main was flowing for about 90 minutes after it burst before the fire department was called to the scene.

Firefighters were using the same drafting technique they use to draw water from lakes, ponds or the ocean to fight fires to draw the excessive water, Bowman said. A large fire hose was seen pouring water into the Venice Canals from South Venice Boulevard and firefighters also placed sandbags in the area to minimize flooding damage.

Firefighters responded aggressively to prevent any injuries and were initially worried about water seeping into electrical panels, Bowman said.

Crews will work into the night to remove the water, Bowman said.

(Editor's Note: Updated at 4:30 p.m. Friday to add more details.)

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