Freeze, thaw leads to broken pipes, water and ice damage

CHICAGO (WLS) -- The City of Chicago brought in heavy equipment to cut through the thick ice that's developed on Eggleston just south of 89th Street. Neighbors said a broken water main has been leaking there for days.

"We couldn't park in our handicapped space. The whole block has been displaced until this morning," Charmaine Johnson said.

Even a school bus got stuck early Wednesday, neighbors said.

Burst pipes come with the freeze and thaw of Chicago's winter. The week started off bitterly cold and then warmed up, leading to problems across the city and suburbs both on the streets and in homes.

"If they're not maintained heat wise those pipes are going to pop," Ed Farnan of ServPro said. He's seen water, drywall and plaster damage.

In South Chicago, water is still leaking from a burst pipe at a vacant home on 89th Street. The stairwell is filled with water, at least eight feet deep. The yard and alley are also filled with water and ice.

The water is flowing next door and into James Smith's basement, where the damage is already in the thousands of dollars, he said.

"I'm trying to reach the next step. Get it shut off. Assess the damage. What repairs we need to do," Smith said.
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