Steam service to about half of the city center after the water line broke

Steam heating service remains temporarily unavailable for about half of downtown Milwaukee after a water line rupture.

At 9:30 p.m., We Energies said they were still working to restore steam heat service to customers.

“We hope that the water in the tunnels will be clear before midnight. Once the tunnels have cooled and can enter safely, we will be able to fully assess any damage to our equipment,” said Brenden. Conway, media relations manager at WEC Energy Group. .

“We will continue to work overnight and into the wee hours of the morning to restore service to all customers. We will provide the next media update no later than 9 am tomorrow,” said Conway.

We Energies shut down part of its steam system early Tuesday morning, said Amy Jahns, senior communications specialist – media relations at WEC Energy Group, which operates We Energies.

The shutdown came after a large city-operated water main ruptured overnight in downtown Milwaukee – flooding parts of the underground steam system, Jahns said.

“For safety reasons, we shut down part of our steam system early this morning,” Jahns said in a statement. “Customers east of the Milwaukee River currently have little or no steam service. “

The city has isolated the broken water line, and We Energies are pumping millions of gallons of water from the steam system.

“Once we have cleaned up the water, we will inspect the steam tunnels and our equipment and start to restore service,” Jahns said.

Crews expect all water to be pumped out by tonight. The blackout did not affect electricity and natural gas services.

The water line rupture occurred Monday night at North Broadway and East Wisconsin Avenue, according to the city’s Department of Public Works. The cause of the rupture has not yet been determined.

Meanwhile, city officials are working to ensure the continuous and safe operation of The Hop tram, which runs near the main break.

Drake Bentley of the Sentinel Journal staff contributed to this report.

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