Water and sewer pipes freeze throughout region

Water and sewer pipes freeze throughout region


ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- As temperatures remain well below freezing, they're wreacking havoc on some of our area's most essential infrastructures.

Lee Cummins is the Rochester manager of Jetter Clean. He says he's been working 7 days a week, with an average of 10 jobs per day, on frozen utility pipes. "It could be frozen sewer lines, frozen kitchen sink lines in a person's home, a lot of manufactured homes are freezing up, also water services, whether you're in a well or a city, we're getting a lot of calls for that too," he said. 

Rochester Public Utilities says they're dealing with the reports as well. "We've had almost 70 cases of frozen water services reported to us, and that doesn't even count the ones where the customer doesn't even contact us," said Tony Benson.

RPU is advising residents to leave one cold water faucet running at a stream about a pencil-wide, possibly for the next two or three months. 

However, this problem is much more widespread than Rochester. "I'm out in Austin, Cresco, Iowa, St. Charles, down into Winona, all the way up to Cannon Falls," said Cummins. 

No matter where you live, temperature is important to keep your water flowing. "At least two months, you're going to have to run that stream of water if your water is below 40 degrees," Benson said. 

If you do run into a problem, patience is key. "Any company you call you have to be patient because every company is just inundated with calls right now, and you just can't get to everybody fast enough, even as hard as you try," Cummins said. 

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