01/09/14 — Cold weather causes two minor water main breaks

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Cold weather causes two minor water main breaks

By From staff reports
Published in News on January 9, 2014 1:46 PM

City officials said the deep freeze Tuesday did not cause too many problems -- until things started to thaw out Wednesday.

On Wednesday morning, two six-inch water mains broke in the downtown area causing minor traffic delays in the area, Public Works Director Jose Martinez said.

The first break in the 400 block of E. Walnut St. occurred around 10:30 a.m., with another following a short time later.

Both were fixed shortly after noon and traffic resumed a normal pattern by 2 p.m., Martinez said.

When temperatures drop and the water inside the lines freezes, the ice can force the pipes to expand and crack, causing leaks once the water begins to thaw.

The same can be true for garden hoses and poorly insulated plumbing, particularly outdoors.

When cold weather is forecast, hoses should be disconnected and drained of water.

The only other step taken because of the weather, Martinez said, was that the sanitation workers start their routes later Tuesday to avoid driving on city roads before sunrise when black ice would have been nearly impossible to see.