Lack of water following main break ‘a huge deal’ for people, businesses in Walnut Cove

WALNUT COVE, N.C. -- In a town like Walnut Cove, sometimes even a small water main break can be a big deal.

On Monday, a break was discovered in a 15-foot piece of PVC pipe near the intersection of Main and Sixth streets. Town Manager Kim Greenwood said the north and south ends of town were largely unaffected, but nearly everyone else was either without water or with low water pressure.

“I had to use distilled water to brush my teeth, out of a jug,” said Olivia Lane, who was trying to pack for college, where she will be taking summer courses. “I don’t have any water, so I can’t really do anything and I can’t go anywhere to wash clothes or anything like that.”

But, while driving down Main Street, many businesses had their signs flipped to “closed.” Some had signs on their windows and doors citing the lack of water for their closures.

“Around here, most of them are very local, and they’re very mom and pop, so they depend on every single day that they’re open to get every bit of business that they can,” said Marsha Dunn, who works in Walnut Cove.

But, losses for some were gains for others.

“Before I came into work I actually tried to go to Bojangles and they were closed,” said Hope Cooper, a waitress at El Cabo Mexican Restaurant.

El Cabo was one of the restaurants with water, and in turn, they picked up some additional customers.

“We figured we were going to be slightly more busy, but I don’t think we realized how many of the businesses were without water,” Cooper said.

Cooper added that the restaurant was “about twice as busy.”

The break was fixed by about 1 p.m., with crews leaving the intersection level, but marked closed. Crews will patch the road in coming days.

At about 5 p.m., Greenwood said some people were still reporting low water pressure.​