WASHINGTON (CBSDC/AP) — Flooding caused by leaking pipes affected by the extreme cold disrupted operations at a D.C.-area hospital and airport.
The George Washington University Hospital says the leak caused two floors to flood, affecting 33 patient rooms.
A spokesman says it happened about 11:30 a.m. Tuesday on the fourth and six floors. He says the hospital relocated 23 patients to other rooms.
The hospital, including the emergency department, remains open and all elective surgical procedures, as well as the cardiac catheterization lab and radiology procedures are running normally.
Meanwhile, at Reagan National Airport, workers were cleaning up Tuesday afternoon after a burst pipe flooded parts of the baggage claim area. The airport said passengers’ bags stayed dry and were moved to another location for pickup.
Flooding at a senior living home in Rockville forced more than 25 senior citizens out of their homes.
Crews were called to the Raphael House Nursing Home, located at 1515 Dunster Road, just after 2 p.m. as water leaking from pipes came in contact with the building’s electrical equipment.
Workers cut power to the building as a safety precaution and Montgomery County rescue crews helped move 28 residents to St. Raphael’s Church, located next door.
Raphael House employees say repairs may take more than 24 hours. They are trying to contact residents’ relatives to find a place for them to stay.
Utility workers in Maryland are battling the cold to repair water main breaks and leaking pipes.
The Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission says it received calls for 38 broken water mains in Montgomery and Prince George’s counties on Tuesday. Hundreds of homes and businesses are without water due to the breaks.
WSSC says repair crews are rotating in and out of the cold to stay safe, so repair times are likely to be longer than the usual four-to-six hours.
Crews also are spreading sand around wet areas caused by leaks to minimize icing.
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