A city Water Department employee was wounded in the foot by a stray bullet this morning when gunfire erupted in North Philadelphia, police said.

The wounded woman, Loretta Palmer, 55, is in stable condition at Temple University Hospital, said Jeff Gilliam, business agent for Palmer's union, AFSCME Local 394.

Palmer and a partner were cleaning sewer on the 700 block of Huntingdon Street shortly before 11 a.m. when they heard gunshots, Gilliam said. The two took cover behind their truck but Palmer was struck in the foot.

"She's in a whole lot of pain," Gilliam said. "We're just thankful it wasn't worse."

The workers did not see who was shooting, Gilliam said.