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Some Green Bay residents asked to leave water running


GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - Some residents in Green Bay are being asked to leave water running to prevent pipes from freezing.

About 600 of the Green Bay Water Utility's 36,000 customers are told to keep a steady stream, about the size of a pencil lead, running from one faucet in their home.

"Basically all over the city, but mainly in older areas of the city," says Green Bay Water Utility General Manager Nancy Quirk. "If the frost is getting down in a certain area, or the pipes are a little bit shallower in others, they could potentially freeze with this cold mass on top of them."

Almost three weeks ago, Quirk says they first alerted 188 customers about the need to run the water. Now they're upping that number just in case, notifying customers either by phone or going door-to-door.

"Normal winters we're getting about three feet of frost at the heart of the winter," says Quirk. "We are now almost at six-feet from this cold, cold weather."

The Green Bay Water Utility understands that keeping the water running isn't cheap. So they will adjust the affected customers' bills accordingly.

"They (utility worker) will put a sign on the faucet they want to let run. At that time they will get a meter reading," says Quirk. "When we tell them to take it off, we will get a meter reading at that time, and then compare that to what they used over the last couple of years during the same periods."

More customers may be asked to do the same in the coming days. Quirk says the running water may continue into April.