As mercury drops pipes burst around the capital
Posted: Jan 24, 2013 7:33 PM ET
Last Updated: Jan 25, 2013 8:49 AM ET
After days of frigid weather and warnings about hypothermia and frostbite, now the plumbing in many homes and buildings across the city is the latest casualty of winter's wrath.
While homeowners and tenants are struggling with the inconvenience of inoperable taps and toilets, or even worse — flooding from a burst pipe — Ottawa's plumbers, like Mike Montpetit of Drain-Away Inc., have had their hands full.
"Pipes are exploding is what's happening," Montpeti said during a break between trying to locate the latest leak. "Every time we open up one section the cold's drawn to another section, freezing the pipes and cracking it. So it's just crazy."
And similar scenarios are playing out all over the city said Ken Seward of Multidrain Inc.
"Our dispatch has been overwhelmed the last couple of days. I know our crews have been working off and on all night the calls hadn't stopped," said Seward. "We're just trying to keep up with the calls — we've had over a hundred calls in the last couple of days."
At an apartment building in Centretown, five burst pipes are spilling water and more than 200 people inside can't get any water. It's been this way since Wednesday.
"You can't do anything without water," said tenant Calandra Lawlor. "If it continues I won't be happy. You can't live like this, it's impossible."
To avoid having your pipes freeze, there are a few tricks like raising the temperature of your house and opening cabinets under your sink where the water lines run or trickling hot water in your taps closest to the outside walls.
One homeowner in Gatineau tried thawing his home's frozen pipes with a blowtorch — definitely not advised — and the decision cost him $100,000 in damages after his house caught fire.
Latest Ottawa News Headlines
- Gatineau promotes itself with free shuttle service
- A new bus service has launched in Gatineau as part of a larger push to market the Outaouais region and boost the economy. more »
- Canadian Tire Centre replaces Scotiabank Place
- The Ottawa Senators announced Tuesday morning that Scotiabank Place will be renamed the Canadian Tire Centre. more »
- 'Fireball' erupted during blaze on Pathway Private
- Police say the extensive damage caused by a large fire in Ottawa's Redwood neighbourhood early Tuesday morning may make it difficult to find out how it started. more »
- Ottawa jazz singer Kellylee Evans struck by lightning
- Local jazz singer Kellylee Evans, scheduled to perform at the Ottawa Jazz Festival this week, is recovering at home after her house was struck by lightning two weeks ago. more »
Top News Headlines
- Neil Macdonald: Washington's obsession with leakers
- Julian Assange and Edward Snowden are just the most prominent targets in an all-out legal and propaganda campaign that America's security apparatus is mounting against leakers everywhere, Neil Macdonald writes. more »
- Who's who in the Senate expense controversy
- Keeping track of the names popping up in the ongoing Senate expenses controversy — from the investigators to the four senators themselves — could be a difficult task for even the most seasoned political observers. more »
- Mixed reviews for Ottawa's new 'open data' website
- Treasury Board President Tony Clement is touting the federal government's revamped data portal as a "new natural resource." But that online window for previously published data arrives at the same time the government faces controversy over just how open it really is. more »
- 2 men jailed in Dominican wedding fight return to Canada
- Two Canadian men who were detained in the Dominican Republic for nearly three weeks after a post-wedding fight broke out at a resort have returned to Toronto, the latest step in a drama that the wife of one of the men said was "like a scene from the movies." more »
- Mike Fisher, Carrie Underwood selling Ottawa dream home
- Ottawa craft beer breweries fuel Ontario boom
- The Spartan Race in 90 seconds
- Ottawa RedBlacks officially revealed as newest CFL team
- G8 leaders agree to 7-point plan on Syria as summit wraps
- Woman charged after drink tossed at Toronto Mayor Rob Ford
- Toronto Mayor Rob Ford needs security, brother says
- Montreal mayor resigns amid corruption charges
- Sharlene Bosma speaks out about husband's murder