LUFKIN, Texas (KTRE) - It was a long night for our water-leak task force and call center as they worked around the clock, responding to private homes and businesses for meter shut-off and two major main breaks. Those two main breaks were repaired overnight. As of this moment, there are no major main breaks that have not been repaired or isolated.
The task force is still out in the field this morning, responding to issues all over town as more and more households see water pressure return. It is important to keep in mind that today is the first day we will consistently be above freezing. That will allow breaks to show that were previously masked by frozen pipes and low water pressure. REPEATEDLY CHECK YOUR HOMES AND BUSINESSES THROUGHOUT THE WEEKEND FOR LEAKS!!! We cannot stress this enough. And don’t assume that because you checked earlier that there isn’t a leak now.
Businesses have been one of our greatest challenges because they aren’t open, and people aren’t there. That is why is it IMPERATIVE that business owners or keyholders check them frequently.
The video you see was taken at the former Temple-Inland corporate office in Diboll and shared with us by Lufkin City Councilman Ward No. 4 Mark Hicks. Though this video was not taken inside the city, we share it to show you what can happen once these pipes start thawing.
Thankfully, the roads are much more passable now.
As for where we stand on pumping - eight of our nine wells are operational. Two of them are still on backup power, but Oncor has let us know that they expect to have electricity restored to them any minute now. Our Assistant Director of Water and Sewer, Jared Murphy, has been with them all morning to be available for any issues that arise once power is restored to those wells.
The ninth well will be out of service for another couple of days due to a mechanical issue from the first ice storm that hit this week. In the grand scheme of things, that’s not an issue because the other eight can overcome the one outage. It is not at all unusual to operate one or two down throughout the year. That is one of the reasons we have so many.