Fluctuating Temps Cause Several Water Main Breaks in West Hartford, Conn. - NECN

Fluctuating Temps Cause Several Water Main Breaks in West Hartford, Conn.



    Fluctuating temps cause several water main breaks in West Hartford, Conn.

    Extreme temperature changes wreaking havoc on Conn. water mains (Published Friday, Feb. 21, 2014)

    (NECN: Brian Burnell, West Hartford, Conn.) - Temperatures plummeted from 50 degrees to sub-zero on Monday causing water mains in Connecticut to crack.

    Eric Livasch of South Windsor, Conn. says he heard, "a couple of big booms overnight.”

    When he looked outside his home on Tuesday morning, Livasch saw gallons of water running down the street. An underground water main had cracked.  

    South Windsor Police Chief Matthew Reed says crews “have to locate the source of the ruptured main. They have to repair that and then the road has been damaged quite a bit."

    It was a similar story in West Hartford, as a 12-inch main installed in 1926 broke overnight on Tuesday. Water had to be shut off to a dozen homes while repairs were made.  

    In neighboring Hartford, there were two more breaks that the water company had to deal with. An 8-inch main installed in 1915 cracked on Victoria Road. 39 homes lost water while it was repaired.  

    A few blocks away, crews started digging up another broken main on Standish Street. The cold alone is not responsible for these breaks. Extreme fluctuating temperatures causes the ground to move and the nearly century-old pipes don't respond well to it.

    City officials are trying to ensure the cold weather doesn't take a human toll as the homeless shelter fill up.

    "If we need to open up additional shelters in order to house those folks without heat or people who are homeless we'll continue to do that.  Are there volunteers or people on the street actively finding homeless and getting them into shelters?  Both our fire department and police department are under alert to make sure that those people who might need their assistance in terms of getting them to shelters do so," says Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra.