The snow wasn't the only problem for some residents in West Warwick and Coventry Thursday. There were two separate water main breaks causing issues.
In Coventry on George Street at Sheltra a second water main break of the day was reported.
And in West Warwick, over five feet of standing water flooded the back end of the Juniper Pond Condo Complex off East Greenwich Road after a water main break on Juniper Road sent surges of water downhill.
"We think the top of the pipe blew off. We usually have three or four different types of breaks and because this one is so big, we believe the top of the pipe blew off," said Tim Brown of the Kent County Water Authority.
Kent County Water Authority officials got word just after midnight and just ahead of some heavy expected snowfall.
"Terrible timing. We had some flooding damage, icing, road was lifted up because there was about a foot of frost in," said Brown.
Folks in the Juniper Pond Condo Complex had about two feet of water in their basements. Five units had to be evacuated at 1:30 a.m. because of the water. And some two dozen residents on Juniper Drive and Marco Drive have been without water all day.
"When the first big cold snaps come, we'll get a break or two. And unfortunately they come around the holidays," Brown said.
In Coventry, the flood waters aren't as deep because water authority officials there were alerted to the problem right away. But with heavy manpower in West Warwick, the problem still poses a tremendous challenge.
"Now we've finally located it, and we're shutting down, about 36 homes have been impacted," Brown said.
Add to those two dozen homes in West Warwick. More than 60 people are without water on a cold winter day, but water authority officials say not to fear, the inconvenience will be short-lived.
"We will get them back online tonight."
Officials said that at this time of year, water main breaks happen, but the cold weather poses special challenges because along with fixing the problem, crews have to be wary of road conditions and do what they can to prevent icing with all the excess water left on the pavement.
"Well priority one is to make sure no
one has an accident over there. To get the sand and salters out there. They
were out there already anyway, and then to get it de-watered," Brown said.
There is no word on the exact amount of water lost by the breaks.
23 Kenney Drive
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