Water advisories remain in Oconto County communities

GILLETT – Despite warmer temperatures, the threat of frozen water pipes remains across the area.

For those in Gillett and Oconto Falls, a water-run advisory has been in place for about a month.

The orders may not be lifted anytime soon.

A pencil-thin stream of water has been running down Rachel Weckler’s kitchen sink for 31 days, and counting.

“It’s kind of annoying, that you’re listening to the water, all the time trickling, and thinking you should be turning it off,” said Rachel Weckler, Gillett.

Gillett Utilities supervisor Ron Anderson says the frost line is seven feet below ground.

“When it thaws, it pushes frost down, and so what happens, is everything starts shifting, puts stress on the water lines, and then they just start snapping. We had a couple of them this week, water main breaks,” said Ron Anderson, Gillett Utilities Supervisor.

Anderson patrolled the city Friday. He was checking for frozen sewer lines, and storm drains clogged with ice.

It’s a similar story in Oconto Falls. About a month ago, people got a letter advising them to turn their water on, and keep it on.

Jay Kostreva says a trickle from his basement sink keeps water flowing to his house.

“It saves the water lateral from freezing up. Also instead of the main line too. If your lateral does freeze, and not letting the water run, you have to pay for it to get it thawed out,” said Jay Kostreva, Oconto Falls.

The Oconto Falls Utility supervisor says the city has used about 40% more water during the advisory. Officials in Oconto Falls, and Gillett say the cities will cover the cost.

“It will be a large revenue loss for the utility. But by the same token, we got to keep customers in water,” said Anderson.

Customers like Rachel Weckler.

“I’d rather have the water run, than to pay a bill to get the pipes fixed. Or someday that I would have to call someone for breakage,” said Weckler.

Utility officials will tell people when they can shut off their faucets.

A complete list of advisories in the area can be found in the FOX 11 News Links Section on our home-page, http://www.fox11online.com.

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