Watching a report last night from Texas, they showed union workers going door to door.
They were showing people how to shut their water off. I was struck by how shallow the valves and inlet pipes are. Didn't look like more than a foot or 18 inches. To weatherize that system would be monumental task. Also they showed many buildings where there were outside supplies that looked like common old PVC. I'm guessing if they do it right it will take years.
24 is regulation depth for burying water lines throughout most of the state. This is not going to change.
What we may get is weatherization of the power grid. We need heaters on our wind turbines. We need heating on sensitive equipment at our natural gas, coal, and nuclear plants. The grid failure was what was so dangerous about this storm. If our cheap PVC busts in a freeze, well just replace it with more, cheap PVC. Its inconvenient, but its not life-threatening.
but I've never heard of water lines from the main to a building breaking, though pipes can freeze in buildings if they are unheated or too close to an uninsulated wall. Obviously nobody is going to dig up all those water pipes and bury them deeper, but I sure hope the powers that be finally figure out that the systems within the power grid have to be weatherized.
One thing I noticed from the news coverage is that a lot of people don't seem to have warm winter clothes (and why would they?). I saw people standing in the cold wearing only jeans and sweatshirts and wrapped in blankets or beach towels. There was a sad story about a child who apparently died of hypothermia in an unheated motor home. Poor kid probably wasn't dressed for such cold weather - to no fault of his or his family. But you can be plenty comfortable and safe sleeping in very cold temperatures if you have warm clothes and a cold-weather sleeping bag (I've been winter camping in subzero weather and was warm enough in the tent; hated having to go to the bathroom, though). Seems to me that if the GOP and the power companies are going to hang onto their money instead of winterizing the grid, which seems likely for the time being, buying at least some long underwear and wool socks and hats (probably available at thrift shops if necessary) would be a good investment for the next cold winter.
minimum depth for water and sewage lines was 4 feet. That was so they wouldn't freeze. And
wind turbines located in cold climates are fitted with the optional (and more expensive) de-icing
heaters so power generation is not interrupted.
Many homes also have 'automatic, temperature sensitive' shut-off valves. Like these (not endorsing product). https://www.keepthewaterflowing.net/best-automatic-shutoff-valve-reviews/
Isn't Infrastructure part of the Biden ARP?
Would that include incentives for weatherizing and shoring up systems, homes, commercial buildings?
Converting all that empty mall and retail space into...medical centers and low income short term housing?
Building jails for all the white collar seditionists going to prison soon?
Lots of good union jobs out there!
the Water Mains as well as Sewer Mainlines are mostly 6 feet. But the Laterals to the Houses are only 18-24 inches deep. Copper Mains and 1 inch PVC schedule 40 to the Houses and then either Copper or PEX from there on.