Detroit water dept. trying to keep up with water main breaks

Detroit water dept. trying to keep up with so many water main breaks

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DETROIT (WJBK) -

The cold weather continues to take a toll on Detroit's water system. Repair crews are trying but just can't keep up with the daily water main breaks, and some people are tired of waiting.

Water main breaks across the city have turned roads into rivers, encased cars in ice and stranded drivers in the streets. Detroit residents have been dealing with low water pressure - or no water at all - during the breaks, yet some tell FOX 2's Randy Wimbley they have also had to deal with rude water department employees.

"I phoned the water department this morning. Her exact words to me ... 'If a manager feels like it, he'll be there,'" one resident told Wimbley.

"First of all, let me apologize to any customers that may have encountered that type of behavior. We're here to serve you. That's our job. No customer should ever be spoken to in that manner," says Detroit Water and Sewerage Dept. Deputy Director Darryl Latimer.

The water department admits a backlog to fixing the daily breaks.

"The weather is just slowed us and our ability to execute those repairs," says Latimer.

The water department says it has roughly $30 million to repair the pipes underground and so far has not gone over budget.

Latimer says the department has brought on an additional contractor for this time of year. In winters past, the department has only had one contractor.

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