Fire hydrant leak shows yet another sign of brutal weather

Hydrant gushes for 24 hours

BRECKSVILLE, Ohio - Settler's Passage homeowners were concerned that one of the fire hydrants on their street had been leaking for more than 24 hours.

The City of Cleveland is responsible for the hydrants in this Brecksville neighborhood and crews showed up about 12:30 p.m. to work on the problem. Cleveland Water Department Assistant Chief of Distribution Tom Scullin said water crews have been busier than usual.

"We have over 50 running water complaints that we haven't addressed yet," said Scullin, "and we've had crews staffed 24/7 trying to keep up with the calls as they come in."

While most of the water breaks occur underground, Scullin said the hydrant had somehow filled with water that froze during the winter and caused the expanding ice to burst the pipe.  Water began to gush out of the hydrant as the ice finally thawed with the warmer weather.

Scullin has been with the water department for a long time but never recalls it being this bad. So far this year, the number of repair calls for the first three months of this year equal half of all the calls they had last year.

"I've been with the city of Cleveland for 31 years in the pipe repair department and this is by far the worst winter we've had as far as main breaks."

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