Knox residents going weeks without water because of freezing tem - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

Knox residents going weeks without water because of freezing temps

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We've been saying it for weeks, it's been a tough winter!

Not only has snow been a problem, but we've also been contending with a long stretch of below-freezing temperatures and that's causing a lot of trouble in some Michiana communities.

Pat Clemons of Knox considers herself one of the lucky ones. She says unlike many of her neighbors, she actually has water in her home.

"They can't boil an egg. They can't wash their hands. They can't brush their teeth. They have children, one lady has a baby, she can't even wash the baby's bottom," says Clemons.

Clemons says 53 of her neighbors didn't have water when she went door-to-door Sunday.

She's been helping those who are dried up, including her son who lives right next door.
She says he's been without water for two weeks!

Knox Mayor Rick Chambers says, "We've just never had a winter like this before. We've never had lines freeze like this before. It's just the extreme conditions."

Chambers said at last count, Monday, 19 homes were without water. He says freeze-ups started January 30th because the ground is frozen 32 inches under the road, and that's where the water lines are in Clemons's neighborhood.

"That area, that was World War II temporary housing. That's what it was built for, so they really didn't worry about code and I don't even know if they had a code back then," says Chambers.

The Mayor says it's too cold to run lines above ground right now, but there might be a temporary solution soon.

"Hopefully at the end of this week when it gets into the 30's, we plan on running some water lines from the fire hydrants to the effected homes," says Chambers.

In the meantime, Mayor Chambers says folks can get water from the spigot at City Hall.

Clemons says she fears for her neighbors in need, "My answer, is there should be a list made. What are your high-risk areas? Who are your high-risk people? Get those people open."

Clemons is particularly concerned about one of her neighbors across the street who has cancer. She says she's been helping her best she can, but she really just needs that water turned back on.

Todd Gardner from the Water Department is stressing that if you do have water, run a steady stream, because people who usually don't have problems are freezing up this year.

 

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