PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — A water main break that went unnoticed for several hours Tuesday caused a significant amount of damage to several businesses in East Liberty.

When Cecilia Price-Knight got the call that her restaurant, Impressions Jamaican Cuisine, was taking on water, she never expected to see the devastation it caused.

“I literally thought this was the Titanic,” said Price-Knight.

There was five feet of water in the basement of her business along North Highland Avenue in East Liberty.

“I was praying it did not come as far into the business,” she told KDKA’s Kym Gable. “We would be devastated even for one day.”

A water main ruptured Tuesday morning, but it went unnoticed for hours because it happened under a vacant building next door.

The rising waters eventually made their way into the adjacent structure, which houses five small businesses. A block of North Highland Avenue was shut down for much of the day.

“It went quite a while undetected,” said Assistant Fire Chief Thomas Cook. “It filled both the sub-basement and basement with water. So we’ve been here a significant number of hours trying to move water.”

“Anything that was stored in the basement is a complete loss,” said Ed Hayes, who represents the management company that owns the large building.

Firefighters say the source of the break was contained at about 4 p.m.

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