NewsRegionBaltimore County


DPW repairing 17 water main breaks including to Pikesville apartment complex

water main.jpg
Posted at 1:29 PM, Dec 31, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-31 19:17:39-05

BALTIMORE (WMAR) — Baltimore's Department of Public Works said 25 water mains were broken Monday.

While crews were making repairs throughout the night others broke, some of them miles away.

As of Tuesday morning, DPW says 17 remain broken.

"When our region goes through freeze and thaw cycles, especially when accompanied by heavy rain, the ground shifts and pipes break," DPW said in a statement.

One of the locations affected is the Milbrook Park Apartments in Pikesville. A DPW spokesman said the line was fixed around 8:30 p.m. Monday, but broke again.

DPW crews are on scene distributing water to residents while repairs are made.

To prepare for future water main breaks and possible service outages, DPW recommends keeping bottled water that will last a day or two.

Aside from water main breaks, DPW says there are multiple ways your water service can be affected during the winter months.

"Water main breaks can impact water service, but electrical outages to pumping stations might also keep water from reaching your home. One branch breaking under the strain of ice can cause problems for thousands.
Remember: water service lines and water meters can freeze when the temperature remains below 25 degrees for extended periods of time. Such conditions can also impact water mains, causing the ground to buckle and shift, resulting in broken water lines, DPW said"

Below are a few tips DPW says can help protect your water service lines during cold weather:

• Insulate pipes located in unheated parts of your house. This is especially a good tip for those who have had frozen pipes in the past.
• Let a thin stream of cold water run from a basement faucet. The stream should be a continuous flow, about the thickness of pencil lead. This water can be caught in a bucket and used later as laundry or dish water.
• If a pipe should freeze, gently warm it with hot air from a blow dryer at the point where it enters the house.
• Be sure you know the location of the water shutoff valve in your home. Check it periodically to ensure that it works properly.
• Be sure to shut off water to outside faucets.
• Periodically monitor your sump pump. A frozen drain pipe could result in a flooded basement.
• Keep bottled water on hand. Plan on needing a gallon of water per person per day.

If you live in Baltimore City and experience a water emergency, call 311. Baltimore County residents are asked to call 410-396-5352.