Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION
Posted: 08/27/2014 11:36 AM | Comments: 0
Last Modified: 08/27/2014 2:31 PM | Updates
Mayoral candidate Paula Havixbeck vowed Winnipeggers will never have to endure another frozen pipes disaster.
Standing out front of the city's sprawling Waverley shops complex Wednesday morning, Havixbeck detailed a comprehensive plan designed to make Winnipeg a centre of excellence on frozen pipes.
"Right now the city does not have an adequate plan, or any plan, that's proactive, that's going to address how we deal with it should it happen again," Havixbeck said. "In these times of climate change, we will see this sooner than perhaps we think we will."
Havixbeck's plan includes:
"We need to be a citizen-focused organization," she said. "We need to be more responsive."
The frozen pipes disaster caught Winnipeg, and most winter cities across North America, by surprise last winter. More than 2,700 Winnipeg properties suffered frozen pipes and several thousand more were instructed to leave a water tap running to prevent more line freezing.
Winnipeg normally experiences about 100 affected properties each year, as the frost penetrates into the ground. But city staff were unprepared for what became a daily deluge of frozen water lines.
Worse, city officials were unable to anticipate which neighbourhoods would be affected or explain why some properties had frozen lines but not their neighbours.
The city had only 3 effective thawing machines and was quick to reject offers from the private sector with equipment that was only sometimes effective.
"As mayor, there will be changes and we will see a plan," Havixbeck said.
Havixbeck’s plan is similar to proposals released earlier in the campaign by Robert-Falcon Ouellette, who promised to: deploy crisis teams to thaw pipes within 72 hours: purchase several more thawing machines; work with academia and private sector to develop preventative techniques; and conduct an in-depth review of last winter’s situation to determine the cause and evaluate the city’s response.
Updated on Wednesday, August 27, 2014 at 2:31 PM CDT: Write-through
Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories? Please use the form below and let us know.
Having problems with the form?Contact Us Directly
Media and mayoralty: race matters
Let's remove the barriers to voting
Let's fix the city's social infrastructure
Bowman's newest deal
Ouellette's star still on the rise
Ouellette attracted unlikely voters to make inroads into downtown neighbourhoods
Bowman has chance to take city forward
New mayor faces high expectations
Result shocks Bowman
Selinger says he and Bowman share several priorities
Shelley Hart new mayor of East St. Paul
Voter turnout highest in a decade
Bowman drops by News Café
Bowman was able to grow
Still need public face on public space
Out with old and in with new