City clears snow, ice from catch basins - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

City clears snow, ice from catch basins

City crew working to clear lines along South Avenue City crew working to clear lines along South Avenue

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WXOW) - A much anticipated warm-up is on the way.  The warmer weather means built up snow and ice will melt and flooding could occur.

There are 6,000 storm drains in the La Crosse.

Almost half are currently covered with snow and ice according to the city.

Thursday, the city cleared drains at the corner of West and South Avenues.

Clearing the snow and ice off the catch basins is just the beginning.

Once they clear the drain, they have access to the pipes inside.

If a pipe is frozen the city uses water pressure to thaw it.

More than 2,500 lbs of pressure pushes the ice out of the pipe and gives the snow and water a place to go.

Jared Greeno, Supervisor, La Crosse Wastewater Utility, said "Water goes into the catch basin, and eventually fills up with ice because it's bitter cold out and it's freezing shut. So basically the catch basin that is supposed to drain water out of the city is froze completely shut."

It took two hours to clear the drain and thaw the frozen pipe on at the intersection. 

Crews will be out again Friday and Monday clearing other drains.

About a dozen pipes in the cities drains are frozen, although they may find more as they clear more drains.

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