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Cold Bursts Fire Sprinkler Lines, Damages Apartments, Evacuates Tenants

The freezing temperatures caused major problems for apartment tenants in Hot Springs early Tuesday when their fire sprinkler lines burst, flooding homes and forcing the electricity off.
HOT SPRINGS, AR -- The freezing temperatures are causing major problems for apartment tenants in Hot Springs overnight when their fire sprinkler lines burst flooding homes and forcing the electricity off.

The Hot Springs Fire Chief and water cleanup crews in Hot Springs say this is a problem they're seeing across the city as they say temperatures dropped as low as 6 degrees in some parts of town. Safety concerns started to arise as the cold is causing these fire sprinkler lines to burst.

"Heaters not being able to keep up with the amount of heat needed to keep out the cold. You had an intrusion of cold to it and it froze the pipes," explained Chief Ed Davis. "We have several instances where businesses here in Hot Springs have crews working right now to restore the fire sprinkler systems."

The Hot Springs Fire Department says they've responded to fire sprinkler systems bursting across their city including a series of bursts at The Point Apartment Complexes.

Tenants there say fire sprinkler lines have burst because of the cold in multiple buildings including one late Monday night, early Tuesday morning that drenched and flooded some apartments forcing tenants to leave after the electricity was shut off.

Because of safety concerns the fire department says if this happens to businesses like apartments, property owners are required to have the fire sprinkler systems repaired.

Crews for restoration company, Steamatic, had their hands full saying they've responded to more than 30 cases of pipes bursting because of the cold.

"Sheetrock falling in, furniture completely soaking wet. It's traumatic for them. It's stressful," explained owner, Richard Poole. "[It's] Because of frozen pipes and expecting to see that go up within the next day."
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