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Poe Homes residents without water six days after main break

DPW installed temporary bypass
Posted at 11:16 PM, Jun 23, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-24 08:10:34-04

BALTIMORE — It's been almost a week since a West Baltimore complex has had water because of a main break. Monday, a water main break a few blocks from Poe Homes left the whole complex without water service.

"It's very hard, and it's very stressful," said resident Rayetta Culp. "My mother is 85 years old, so living here with her, I'm trying to make sure that she eats, trying to make enough water so she can take her bath."

"The toilet still doesn't fill up and my sink water runs a little slow," said resident Shemida Watson Davis. "Everybody is having a hard time. They need to bath; people work."

Originally, Department of Public Works crews had to shut off service for 1,000 people for the break at W. Baltimore and S. Schroeder Streets, but officials said they got most of it restored, except Poe Homes.

"It turned out to be a very complicated break with multiple mains and multiple large valves involved in it," DPW Public Information Officer Jennifer Combs said.

As crews worked, volunteers from the area helped the 281 residents by delivering water and food and setting up mobile showers and bathrooms.

"I'm not going to sit here and bash the city or what they are or are not doing. We're here as concerned citizens for our other residents to try and help them," said Michael Foy.

"I just thank God that we are getting help," said Davis.

Sunday afternoon, liaisons from DPW and the Mayor's Office went door to door to see if there were any issues.

"To investigate if they are getting full water pressure and to see where any internal fixes need to be made," said Combs.

Many still just had trickling water.

"We need help as soon as possible. It's hot. It's sweaty and we need some water," said Culp.

DPW crews are working on a permanent fix that includes making corrections to the infrastructure. They don't have a timeline in place, but Combs said it will be as soon as possible.

In the meantime, residents who still don't have adequate running water are asking for donations of water, toiletries, hot food, baby food, and bleach to be delivered to 901 W. Saratoga Street.