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Not a drop to drink

KNOM's circulator pump

The morning of our press deadline for this month’s newsletter, the KNOM staff came into the studio building to an unpleasant surprise: no water. None of the faucets, water fixtures, or toilets in the building had any water pressure. Not a drop.

Our local public utility identified the culprit to be a frozen pipe caused by a failed circulator pump (pictured); even in mid-October, temperatures in Nome had already fallen well below the freezing point long enough for frozen pipes to become a problem.

While the water-pressure issue at KNOM was resolved relatively quickly – we had free-flowing water again by late morning – this incident is but a prelude of things to come for so many in our region.

This winter, many of our listeners will face freezing pipes – and in temperatures much colder than those in the fall. In blizzards or deep cold snaps (temperatures of -20°, -30°, or colder), many homeowners will experience problems with their heating systems. Power outages are relatively common, even in winter – although some in our listening range live permanently without electricity or running water.

These daily challenges spur us on to help thousands of families across Western Alaska. Living in the Alaskan bush is not easy – in winter, especially. But we believe that by providing timely weather forecasts, accurate news reporting, and urgent community announcements, we can make a positive difference in the lives of our listeners. You are making that difference, too – every day. Thank you.


This article is part of the November 2012 edition of our newsletter, The Nome Static.

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Land Acknowledgement

We acknowledge that KNOM Radio Mission is located on the customary lands of Indigenous peoples. 

Based in the Bering Strait region, KNOM broadcasts throughout the homelands of the Iñupiaq, Siberian Yup’ik, Cup’ik and Yup’ik peoples.