Six water main breaks in Columbia since Sunday

COLUMBIA, Mo. - Several water mains broke around Columbia, including four on Sunday and two on Monday.

The largest happened Sunday morning on Stadium Boulevard and Ash Street, where a 6-inch line used for a fire suppression system broke.

The line was isolated and water pressure was restored to customers who lost it while the water was leaking.

But three other private lines also broke on Sunday - on Loch Lane, Briarwood Lane and Phyllis Avenue.

And on Monday, other pipes burst on Proctor Drive and Garth Avenue.

A spokeswoman for Columbia Water and Light, Connie Kacprowicz, said the breaks could be blamed on several things.

"It could be the extreme temperatures or it could be our soil," Kacprowicz said. "Our soil has a high clay content and shifts easily when the temperature experiences extreme changes or when we have a change in moisture."

Kacprowicz said these water pipes are usually fairly well protected because they are buried deep in the ground where the temperature remains more stable. But she said if the soil shifts or the pipe is not deep enough, that is when the breaks happen.

Despite the issues with the city, private water main lines concern Water and Light the most.

Kacprowicz suggested making sure to let a little water drip in these extreme temperatures or open the cabinet doors to keep pipes a little warmer.  She also said to make sure where the main shutoff valve is.

To contact the city if a water main breaks, call (573) 874-6229 during normal business hours.  After hours, call (573) 875-2555.

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