Des Moines Water Works: many reasons for water main breaks

DES MOINES, Iowa -- It's not just sub-zero temperatures that cause water main breaks.

Des Moines Water Works says there's usually a number of things that go into a break.

"The soil type at that particular loaction, what material the water main is made out of, the corrosion around that water main material, frost heave, even the temperature of the water that's in the water main can be a factor" says Water Works Public Affairs Manager Laura Sarcone.

She says a recent assessment of the water system gives them an idea of where mains are most likely to break.

"We can rate each section of our water main distribution system and see what has the possibility to break more frequently and most the most amount of money to fix when it breaks" Sarcone says.

She says the Water Works spent more than $9 million last year replacing water mains, and has plans to spend $10 million this year.

A nearly four-mile stretch of Hubbell Avenue in Des Moines was closed Thursday morning as a number of water main breaks were fixed.

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