FROZEN TUNDRA: Frost At Record Depth

The Des Moines metro is standing on two and half feet of frozen dirt -- a record measurement. That number is usually a foot shorter.

The sub-freezing temperatures before the snow is to blame, causing the ground to harden faster and much deeper according to the National Weather Service.

“I believe when the ground does freeze that you get a little contraction of it and so that can cause problem around water mains going into people’s houses,” meteorologist, Craig Cogil said.

Des Moines Water Works, CEO and General Manager, Bill Stowe says they are seeing a record number of water main breaks because of the compressed soil.

“We were averaging about four a day in January and were down to three a day in February.”

Until it gets warmer, there is not much homeowners can do to prevent pipes from bursting. However, Stowe suggests homeowners invest in a “homeserve” insurance plan that will cover damaged pipes.

Filed in: News


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