Facing freeze ups

Adam Randell
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St. Anthony Mayor states 50-60 homes experienced water loss this winter

St. Anthony

As the majority of people will attest, this winter is no longer considered the norm and it’s being reflected on St. Anthony waterlines.

According to Mayor Ernest Simms residents and businesses have face upwards of 50 freeze ups as a result of the extended cold snap.

“And there is nothing we can do to prevent it,” he said. “We are facing a winter we haven’t seen in 30 years. We were getting minus 20 temperatures in December.”

The town has its lines buried at a minimum of six feet in an effort to prevent frost from reaching it. It’s questionable how effective this approach is, as Simms said some lines freeze while others don’t.

As of deadline, the town was reporting approximately six households without water.

But that doesn’t mean the homes receiving water again are tied directly into the water system.

The town has granted permission to run garden hoses from neighbouring households to provide water to homes with frozen lines.

“If someone’s water freeze ups, we’ll find the curb stop for them if they want to try and thaw it,” said Simms. “If we can’t get it that way we’ll provide a hose of some sort to the next nearest house and that person will be given water that way. They’ll be asked to maintain the pipe and if it’s left running it shouldn’t freeze.”

But that’s about as much as can be done for residents, Simms says, stating digging up lines would only do remove the insolation and cause more harm than good. Residents wishing to free their waterlines would have to do so themselves.

“We have never entered into the prospect of trying to thaw waterlines, recently anyways,” he said. “It’s an application that if you’re doing it, you need to have professional people who know what they are doing.”

Geographic location: St. Anthony

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