LINCOLN, Neb. (KCAU) — More than 600 inmates were left without running water when a water pipe burst at Nebraska State Penitentiary (NSP) on Friday.

According to a press release from the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services (NDCS), four minimum security housing units were placed on modified operations and had their water shut off as crews were called in to fix the break.

“The cause of the break has not yet been identified,” said Diane Sabatka-Rine, interim director at
the NDCS. “The water and steam have been shut off to the housing units, shop areas and other support buildings. Meals will continue to be provided and served on Styrofoam trays, since the water is off.”

Inmates were given access to portable toilets and bottled water. NSP Warden Michele Williams said the hope is to have water restored by Saturday. However, since the location of the leak is unknown, it is difficult to know exactly when water is turned back on. Williams also said the age of the pipes meant there is a chance that another break could occur when water is turned back on, necessitating more downtime.

If water takes longer to be restored, inmates will be given more bottled water and also will be given access to restrooms and showers.