Crews to replace half-mile of water pipeline at Grand Canyon

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By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver

GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK, Ariz. (AP) -- A half-mile section of a water pipeline at the Grand Canyon that is subject to frequent breaks is being replaced.

Construction starts Monday on the Trans-Canyon Pipeline at Phantom Ranch at the bottom of the Grand Canyon. The work is expected to be complete in July.

Grand Canyon officials say hikers and backcountry users should be prepared to treat water from creeks for drinking. Construction crews will have to shut down the pipeline occasionally along the most popular trails.

The 16-mile pipeline was built in the mid-1960s and supplies water throughout the national park from a natural spring. Officials say a full replacement of the pipeline could cost up to $150 million.

Major breaks on the pipeline occur five to 30 times each year.

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