Plumbers scramble to fix unprotected pipes after freeze - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports

Plumbers scramble to fix unprotected pipes after freeze

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NEW ORLEANS - Some South Louisiana families woke up without running water Tuesday as area plumbers scrambled to assess the damage to frozen pipes.

"I got up to take a shower, and no water came out," said Eric Rushing.

He forgot to run his water when temperatures dropped, freezing his pipes.

A plumber explained what went wrong.

"The first thing we do when we come to a job site is go to the main water supply that comes out of the ground," said Ray Cefalu, of Pete's Plumbing.

He found no water coming from that spigot. That's where he says Eric's problems began.

"It wasn't protected. It should have have some kind of wrapping on it. A newspaper with a plastic bag on it would have helped," Cefalu said.

Down the street, Patricia McQuirter's water is fine. She used some blue tarp and tape.

"It was just some stuff that I had at the house and I took it and wrapped it up," she said.

One neighbor used rags, another used tenting, another used a household grocery bag.
One woman used the traditional insulation.

If the temperatures stay low, people with unprotected pipes could be out of water for at least another day. Your best ally is the sun to melt the icy pipes.

Cefalu says the worst thing you can do is to use a torch or open flame to heat the pipes. Let them thaw naturally.

In the meantime, Eric Rushing says he will ask a friend to let him borrow a shower.

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