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Thousands Still Without Water After Multiple Water Mains Break

BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- Freezing weather seems to be here to stay. Three days after snow fell, we're still digging out. The bigger problem is that the cold weather is leading to water woes.

Rick Ritter has a look at the incredible amount of water main breaks and how crews are working to fix the problems the extreme cold is causing.

Water main breaks, leaks and frozen pipes--it's non-stop for Mr. Rooter Plumbing & Heating. Record low temps are wreaking havoc on homes.

"Every time the temperatures drop, our phone lines go crazy," said owner Jamie Smith.

Smith says they can't keep up with the influx of calls.

"Oh my gosh, it has been insane," Smith said. "We started operating like a triage, like an emergency room.

In Canton, it's a busted pipe.

"I heard what sounded like a huge crack and then a waterfall," said Julia Baller.

The couple is dealing with no water and hefty repairs.

"When this bursts open, water is going to gush out," Smith said.

"It has not been ideal," Baller said.

On the other side of the city, it's the nightmare on Tolley Street.

"Today is worse than it was the last few days," said Tolley Street resident Charles Johnston.

An uncontrollable flow of water is causing chaos and disrupting lives.

"It's been a problem and it just needs to be fixed and addressed," Johnston said.

With no delay at Morrell Elementary School, parents and kids risked their lives on hills turned to ice rinks.

"They should have had a delay, absolutely correct," said parent Sherry Sheldon. "They were slipping and sliding and whatnot. It was a total mess."

Around the corner on Harman Avenue, it was the same story.

"Needless to say, I wasn't very happy," said Michele Danson, whose basement is a sheet of ice. "The water is just pouring in from next door."

It's one call after the other with Mother Nature getting the best of Baltimore.

"I don't think we'll survive another snow storm," Danson said.

Conditions will get worse before they get better. Just because your home hasn't frozen yet doesn't mean it won't. Experts advise you follow precautions: leave cold water on a trickle. Cold water freezes much less quickly than hot water. Also, open up cabinets, especially under your sink, so heat can get in. It sounds simple, but it's really important and it makes a difference.

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