Freezing weather bursts pipes, floods daycares and restaurants

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Saturday, January 20, 2024
Freezing weather bursts pipes, floods businesses
Chicago weather has been so cold that restaurants and daycares have to clean up and repair flooding damage from frozen water pipes that burst.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- The freezing cold weather over the past week has caused burst pipes and left a Chicago daycare and an Indiana restaurant scrambling to get cleaned up and back to business.

"Day by day, just to see bit by bit everything that we worked so hard for to just be washed away, it's rough," said Kemit Academy owner Kiley Russell.

The Hyde Park special needs daycare has been flooded after a pipe ruptured overnight Wednesday in an apartment above their business.

Russell said a tenant, who she said claimed to be hot in their unit, turned off their heat and opened their windows during sub-zero temperatures.

READ MORE: Nearly 3 feet of snow fall in parts of Northwest Indiana

"I'm almost about to cry just thinking about their lack of regard," she said.

The damage is widespread, from floor to ceiling, damaging school equipment and even, Russell said, other units of the building. ABC7 reached out to the building's owner but have not yet heard back.

The cold weather also caused pipes to burst in the ceiling of Asparagus Restaurant in Merrillville, Ind., causing heavy flooding.

"It was a lot of loud pops, and I'm guessing that was all the pipes that were starting to crack," said general manager Kate Witte.

Witte said the restaurant will be open on a very limited basis until the damage is cleaned up.

For both, the flooding has caused cascading concerns.

"It's not just a business. You know what I mean? There are people that depend on us," said Russell.

Russell said she doesn't know how long it'll take to repair the damage in her daycare, and hopes for the sake of her students and staff she doesn't have to close down.