Water main breaks more common this time of year

MUSCATINE, Iowa (KWQC) -- A water main break repair at West Middle School in Muscatine forced the school to cancel classes for the rest of the day Friday.

Around 7:45 a.m. Jeff Miller, director of facilities with Muscatine Community School District said a custodian with the school said the toilets wouldn’t flush. At that time, Muscatine Power & Water was called.

While crews don't exactly know what caused the main to break. They say many times weather plays a role.

“The shift in the temperature causes the ground to shift. When the ground shifts then that puts pressure on the pipes. Then the water lines can break,” said Erika Cox, Director, Customer & Technology Experience.

Iowa American Water says water main breaks are a normal part of the water utility business.

Just this month alone the company has seen 11 water main breaks in the Iowa Quad Cities area.

In an average year, its crews will respond to and repair about 200 or so. So as the temperature continues to change. You can expect to see more crews out working.

“Winter time is certainly a time of the year where towns do experience more water main breaks,” said Cox.

Iowa American Water says last year in November there was 22 water main breaks in the Iowa Quad Cities area.