The bitterly cold weather that has had a grip on much of the Stateline area for the last couple of days looks as if it will loosen its grip by Sunday, but before it does, the cold weather is causing water pipes to burst around the city.
City crews have been working non-stop over the past few days patching water main breaks all over the city. A break on Raven and Alpine has left some 60 homeowners without water since early Saturday morning while crews try to find the leak. The city says that the cold weather acts like a knife on water pipes as the frost in the soil expands. More water main breaks are likely as the water department says the frost is the worst they've seen in about five years.
This morning a small fire broke out at Jerry McKracken Motor Cars on Broadway. The owner was thawing frozen pipes with a liquid propane fueled torch. Rockford Fire Department says an open flame device should not be used. Instead open cupboards to the frozen pipes and let the warm air thaw the pipes.
If using a portable space heater, it’s recommended to keep a safe distance of about 18 to 36 inches away. To prevent freezing pipes, leave a small trickle of water running.