INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (June 23, 2015) - Water main breaks shut down streets for hours Tuesday and left almost a hundred customers without water.
If you thought water main breaks were exclusive to cold weather, think again. Indy is an aging city, where this will only become more common.
January 9, 2015, five pipes burst across Indianapolis.
“We went from a weekend that was relatively cold, but then on Wednesday we had just severe cold and so that puts pressure on our system,” said Sarah Holsapple, Spokeswoman for Citizens Energy Group.
Fast forward to Tuesday, when it was consistently sunny and sitting at 80 degrees…
“I have to go to work and we don’t have any water. It’s kind of hard to get around too,” said Amanda Stout who lives near one of Tuesday’s water main breaks.
Two almost simultaneous water main breaks shut down streets and shut off water to almost 100 customers.
“We woke up to make some food and stuff and there was no water in the sink or in the bathroom and se we walked outside and seen it all,” said Stout.
“We have about 700 water main breaks every year. So the fact that there are two water main breaks in one day is actually not very uncommon for us. It’s just that these two happened to impact high traffic areas in the early morning hours,” said Holsapple Tuesday.
While winter weather may mess with water mains more, an aging Indy infrastructure can guarantee that water main bursts will happen all year round.
“Just coincidental; the two mains weren’t installed at the same time, they’re not connected to one another but they both did break and they did cause an impact to customers and to traffic,” said Holsapple.
So while they’re incredibly inconvenient, officials from Citizens Energy say they’re not really preventable. System upgrades can only be made as breaks occur. To replace the whole water infrastructure would cost billions of dollars, and jack water rates way up.