Tennessee American installing a new pipe across Tennessee River

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CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – Tennessee American Water will begin excavating across the Tennessee River tonight as it begins installing a new 30-inch water main to the north shore.

The company says the process involves using a small explosive charge to crack the bedrock.

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The bedrock is then excavated from the riverbed to leave a trench.

The more than 3 million dollar project will install the third pipe across the Tennessee River.

It will also be the largest, and serve 20-thousaand customers on the north side of Chattanooga, Red Bank and Signal Mountain.



The blasting process takes less than 10 minutes and the work is performed from a barge.

Daphne Kirksey with Tennessee American says “While they’re doing the blasting, they’ll sound a horn, before, multiple times, and they will have boats three hundred feet upstream, downstream, and nobody can pass along the river while that’s going on. And that’s about a ten minute process.”

The company says it’s working with the Chattanooga Fire Department, TVA, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency to follow all safety guidelines.