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Water main breaks kept utility crews busy Tuesday

Water main break seen on Ashland Avenue in Green Bay. (Photo from: FOX 11).
Water main break seen on Ashland Avenue in Green Bay. (Photo from: FOX 11).

GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - A number of water main breaks in Green Bay left a lot of people with dry faucets at home.

While others to have to work in this cold replacing the pipes.

“This is the coldest it’s been since 1993 or so. Last year, we had 27 water main breaks in January. Right now, we’re up to 54. So we’ve doubled what we had last year,” Nancy Quirk, Green Bay Water Utility general manager told FOX 11.

The cause is the deep freeze we've been in all month long.

“The frost levels last week were at about four and a half to five feet down. And our water main is sitting at about seven feet, six to seven feet down. So as that frost goes down, frost is like concrete. It causes the ground to shift as it goes down,” said Quirk.

There were four water main breaks in Green Bay. While in downtown Appleton, a broken water main flooded streets. The main library was closed and buses at the terminal next door had to be re-routed.

It hasn't just been the public pipes that are being hurt in this cold. Water utility officials say recently they've had to respond to almost 30 calls from residents with frozen pipes in their homes.

(Additional reporting from FOX 11)