Are there too many water line breaks in Rapid City?

RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA TV) - Water line break after water line break. In just two weeks, there were five water line breaks. But it seems to be common for the city to experience this during the winter and spring months.

"Between the shifting soils and a couple of cases we've had, aging infrastructure, aging water line that we can have a number of water line breaks during a winter season. But nothing out of the ordinary that we've experienced in previous years," says City of Rapid City communications manager Darrell Shoemaker.

Shoemaker says it seems like more water breaks are occurring because the city is announcing them more to the public...to help avoid traffic problems. Fortunately, the owner of the Fairmont Diner says the water main breaks have not affected her business.

"Yeah, I find it on the news but I haven't had that experience of the water loss here at all. I've been lucky," says Fairmont Diner owner Sheryl Uthe.

Even though the recent water main line break didn't affect the Fairmont Diner located on Fairmont Boulevard and Park View Drive, they fear the next break location might not be the same story.

"I would lose the customers because of water main down or a pipe broke. I mean you'll lose a lot of money. These small mom and pop places like the Fairmont Diner can't make it when we lose days or hours in a place like this cause our customers depend on us to be her for their lunch," says Uthe.

Uthe says years ago she had water line problems and it took some time to regain the money she lost. Now, there are 400 miles of water lines throughout the city. The city continues to replace old pipes with new ones.