TROY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The Department of Public Utilities worked to repair a water main break in Troy on Saturday, but thanks to the cold, these breaks could be occurring more than ever.
Cold weather conditions have been causing water main breaks like this one on Hoosick Street in Troy, NEWS10 ABC talked to a water department commissioner about why the breaks are particularly bad during the winter months.
“This year what the issue is that it got cold quicker and we haven’t had enough snow cover on the ground, so if the grounds not insulated, Frost is getting into the ground quicker creating some forces on the mains causing the breaks,” said Joe Coffey, Albany Water Department Commissioner.
The commissioner says that this early cold snap is affecting pipes all over the Capital Region.
“As you’ve seen in Cohoes and Troy and many of our sister cities around the area, it’s just old water pipes that are going to be subject to this every year,” Coffey said.
The mayor of Troy says that is probably what happened Sunday morning when an old pipe on Hoosick Street burst.
“It’s just an old pipe, it could’ve been a frost heave, it could have been some work that was done here earlier last week,” said Patrick Madden, Mayor of Troy.
Regardless of the cause, officials say to remember that the cold can actually slow the repair process down.
“Usually it takes us four to six hours to get the water back on but when it’s really cold, it’s going to take longer because of the cold,” Coffey said.
Still the mayor of troy says that utility crews worked quickly and efficiently on Hoosick Street Sunday despite the single digit temperatures.
“It has been isolated. They’ll make the patch and hopefully fill it and be out of here shortly, they’re working under extreme conditions right now. They’re doing great,” Madden said.
The commissioner says that if you have a fire hydrant on your street, you can actually help crews out by shoveling the snow around it. This can help speed up the repair process.