In one instance, a water problem in a third-story Tualatin apartment caused ceiling sheetrock to collapse. Fortunately no one was injured, but a family was displaced.
As a result of the activity spike, five volunteer companies were activated to assist firefighters with water problems, and a chief officer worked at the dispatch center to help prioritize resources.
With temperatures below freezing, pipes and faucets near or in exterior walls may be at risk of freezing and bursting, resulting in a water problem when warmer temperatures return.
Cold weather reminders:
-Know how to shut-off the water to your home and unhook outside hoses from faucets.
-Place foam covers over outside faucets and crawl space openings.
-Leaving a trickle of water running from a faucet farthest away from the water meter can be helpful.
-You can also wrap insulating material or electrical wire heating wrap around the pipes. This can be purchased at any home improvement store.
-Never use a propane torch or an open flame to thaw a pipe due to the risk of igniting wood beams, flooring and other combustible materials around pipes.
Have you checked your disaster kit?
-Prepare for power outages and other problems that happen during the winter months.
-Gather necessary supplies including flashlights, extra batteries, water, food, blankets, cell phone (vehicle) charger, manual can opener, battery-operated clock, etc.
-Stock up on food and water, as well as necessary medications.