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Plumbing companies experiencing backlogs due to winter storms

Published: Feb. 24, 2021 at 6:55 PM CST
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - Last week’s winter weather in Central Louisiana caused many homes and businesses to have leaking and busted pipes.

Over the last seven days, plumbing companies have been overwhelmed with calls and are experiencing the largest amount of backlog that they have ever received.

Travis Adams, the plumbing service manager for ACA, said that they already had a few days of backlog before the winter weather because of there being a limited amount of licensed plumbers in the area, but now, many of those planned projects are pushed back three weeks.

“In a natural disaster like this, it can be near devastating. We have a large amount of infrastructure that needs repairs and you only have a small number of people who are qualified to fix it,” said Adams. “We will probably be seeing the effects of this over the next month or two.”

A lot of the emergency calls have come from schools, hospitals and commercial businesses that are dealing with leaks and toilets not being able to flush due to low water pressure. However, some places still don’t have water even a week after the ice storms.

Adams said they are prioritizing what calls to respond to first to make sure everyone gets their water restored and limit the number of damages caused by leaking water.

“Any facility that doesn’t have water is a top priority for us, whether it’s a college campus or a homeowner. We just want people to have water,” said Adams.

Last week, many people tried covering their pipes because of the freezing weather, however, a lot of the older pipes still cracked which left pools of water underneath homes. Since the plumbers are responding to emergency calls first, many homeowners may not be able to get their pipes fixed for a few weeks. Adams says there are measures residents can take to prevent any more damages while waiting for the plumbers.

“If you have a water leak underneath your house, you can use a stop and waste valve to turn the water on and off as you need. If you have a leak that’s not causing damages to your home, you can use it intermittently,” said Adams.

Adams is hoping more high school students become interested in plumbing because they are at the point where they are paying them up to $45 per hour just to have people with the proper training to respond to all the calls.

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