With frigid weather, old water main pipes cracking in Everett area

EVERETT, Wash. -- Decades-old water pipes in Snohomish County are cracking from the cold, with two cases in just the last 24 hours.

And the busted pipes mean people who live in Everett was going without water. Hana Kim spent the day talking to those people, then went to the city to ask what it is doing to fix it.

The ruckus outside Kellie Bergsagel's house got her investigating.

"I heard all the banging and clunking and I looked out the window," she said.

Crews were at work on a busted water main line on State Street meant she and 15 other neighbors had no water on the coldest day of the latest cold snap.

"I am going to head to my parents for the rest of the day," Bergsagel said. "I mean I need to have water."

But neighbors over on Oakes Avenue had another problem. The downstairs neighbor got flooded.

"It was just a torrent of water, so I picked up the phone and called 911," said Austin Kinser.

When the water main cracked, Kinser said a powerful gush of water flooded the neighbor's unit, missing his mom's front door by inches.

The most likely culprit -- cast iron pipes dating to the 1940s are having a hard time withstanding the chilly temperatures.

The city of Everett said they've had 12 water main breaks since Dec. 1.

"The northern part of Everett is older than the southern part of Everett so we have a greater number of breaks in the northern part," said Kathleen Baxter, of Everett Public Works.

The city is replacing busted pipes as fast as workers can, but the entire infrastructure can't be replaced.

Late Wednesday afternoon, Kelli and her neighbors said they had their water restored.