Water main break may have caused SF house to begin sliding off hill


SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — A water main break may have been the cause behind the emergency demolition of a San Francisco home that was sliding off a hill, according to the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission.

A 3-story house located at 256 Casitas Avenue in the city’s Sherwood Forest neighborhood had to be demolished when a neighbor reported a massive crack on the foundation last week.

Crews identified a break and repaired a leak on an 8-inch water main on Casitas Avenue, about four houses away from the home that was demolished.

A demolition crew was forced to work quickly to tear the house down before it could collapse and fall onto a residence at the bottom of the hill.

Earlier this week utility crews did preliminary visual inspections but found no signs of a leak. City crews continued to notice water on the downward slope, so SFPUC dispatched its leak detection crew on Saturday.

“The team used special equipment to painstakingly listen to every inch of the main and service lines in the area. After 7 hours of searching, the crews found a leak approximately 230 feet, or four houses, away from the demolished home,” an SFPUC official said.

Crews repaired the leak that evening.

The investigation into the cause of the hillside instability is ongoing. It is too early to know if the leak was directly connected to the incident, according to SFPUC officials.

Stay with KRON 4 News for updates on this story.

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