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Mild weather big plus for town water pipes

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Unless Mother Nature decides to dump a pile of cold weather and snow on us, town residents shouldn’t have to worry too much about their water pipes freezing up this winter.

That’s a prediction Bruce Spottiswood, superintendent of town facilities (Works), suggested yesterday, noting that the unseasonably mild weather of late means a big gap between ground frost and residential water mains.

“Right now in high traffic areas, there’s about two-and-a-half to three feet of frost, if not quite a bit less than that,” he said.

“Unless the weather takes a horrendous nose dive, I don’t foresee any problems with water [lines] freezing,” he added.

During the winter, high traffic on town streets drives the existing frost deeper into the ground, Spottiswood said. And under normal winter conditions, that frost level probably would be creeping up on pipes by now.

“Normally last year the frost would have been at about five-and-a-half feet by now," he noted. ”Normally your water mains are about seven to eight feet or deeper.

“Unless we get a lot of cold weather, the frost wouldn’t come near [that level],” he remarked.

Spottiswood said low traffic areas currently have only about one-and-a-half feet of ground frost.

Public Works has not received any calls from people regarding frozen water pipes so far this winter.

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