MILLVALE (KDKA) — The Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority is now working with the Red Cross to help a Millvale woman while they try and resolve a water problem that has left her without water for almost two weeks.

KDKA’s Harold Hayes: “Why is this taking so long?”

PWSA’s Scott Towler: “The weather. We have multiple crews from PWSA, contractors working in extreme, severe, cold weather where we have water mains, as well as service lines that have frozen. They’re difficult to locate.”

The water authority’s interim chief operating officer says even though its warmer now, some underground lines are still frozen. That’s why it’s hard to find the specific problem keeping cancer patient Doris Henn from having running water for 12 days now.

Her only consolation is that the PWSA is coordinating with the Red Cross to offer her a three-day hotel voucher while they work on it.

Hayes: “What’s your best estimate, or can you give one as to when she will be able to get water again?”

Towler: “Our hopes are to have water restored by the end of the week; however, we’re also working with the health department to look at alternatives to provide temporary water service as well.”

But city Councilmember Deb Gross, who sits on the PWSA Board, says the agency has to look at a longer term view.

“We have been pushing at every single board meeting to do better at being in advance of these emergency situations. We should be replacing lines before they are so old that they break, and then residents have no water,” said Gross. “So, that’s our utmost concern… is that not only do we get the water restored to these residents on site, but then we find out about these problems before they are emergencies, and do something about them.”

The next PWSA Board meeting is scheduled for Friday, March 20 at 10 a.m. and what’s happened in Millvale is bound to come up then.

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