The break was reported around 5 a.m. on the Smithsburg Square at the intersection of Water Street and Main Street. Crews have been out on the scene since 6 a.m., and say it could take hours to fix the issue.
Currently, Smithsburg Elementary and the middle school and area high school are open and operating without running water. Earlier, there were rumors about the schools not having working bathrooms. A parent reached out to WHAG and said there was notice posted on the doors of the high school early Friday morning.
According to Washington County Communications Officer Richard Wright, the schools each have a large supply of water bottles for drinking water, lunch is being served on a normal schedule and the bathrooms are being flushed manually, using containers of water.
Wright says each school has open and working bathrooms. At the elementary school, the toilets are being flushed by staff members once the children are done using the restroom.
Many parents have reached out to WHAG, concerned for their children's hygiene and safety.
Wright has confirmed the schools were approved to remain open Friday by the Washington County Health Department. He says this is not the first time they've kept a school open without running water. He says it does happen from time to time, depending on the weather and season.
According to the Maryland State Department of Education, there is no state code violation regarding this issue.
Wright says each school has been able to run smoothly throughout the day, even though there is no running water.
WHAG spoke with Mayor Mickey Myers, who said it was the school's decision to remain open. Mayor Myers said they expect to have the water turned back on at the schools by 4:30-5 p.m. Friday. She said all other affected areas should have running water back on by Friday night.
The cause of the water main break in the town is still under investigation.
Stay tuned, we'll have more information coming up tonight at 5 p.m.
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