Madison Water Utility crews brace for broken water mains

Madison Water Utility crews brace for broken water mains

With temperatures set to drop below zero midweek, Madison Water Utility repair crews are preparing for a long and cold week.

“I’m going to pack a bigger lunch and probably hope that we’re going to be here a little bit longer than an average eight-hour day,” said Troy Coogan, an MWU employee.

While this week will likely be a busy one for repair crews, this year has been a relatively slow one so far.

“Last year we had something like 250 main breaks in the first three months of 2014. This year we’re sitting right around three dozen,” said Amy Barrilleaux, public information officer for MWU.

Repair crews responded to three water main breaks Monday and were investigating a possible fourth. With temperatures expected to fall below zero by midweek, MWU crews are asking for help from the public.

“The biggest thing is if people come across water running down the road they need to call our phone number,” Coogan said.

MWU’s dispatch number for reporting broken water mains is 608-266-4661.

While Madison mains will be vulnerable to bitter cold temperatures, so will water pipes in homes and businesses.

“You really need to make sure that the pipes in your home are winterized and you’re keeping your house warm enough if you’re leaving town so that your pipes don’t freeze and burst,” Barrilleaux said.