City of Eatonton-EPWSA inaction on fire hydrant problem flabbergasts man
This fire hydrant on North Jefferson Avenue has a top that is painted black -- indicating it lacks adequate pressure to fight fires. It is near an area where two homes have burned down over the past year -- including one this week. (Photo by Don Richeson.)
We had another house burn down on North Jefferson Avenue. How many more Eatonton homes have to burn down before the hydrants are fixed and made operational for the fire department to use?
One across from Imperial Mill has been defective since 1940 or 1941.
In the 2000s and each year thereafter, I called twice a year to the city and water department and then Eatonton-Putnam Water and Sewer Authority after they took over.
While the city was in control, I was told they had work orders in to repair it. They must have had a stack of them.
When they had a major repair going to the Imperial Mill water line before EPWSA – about two years ago -- I requested a work order to have to have the hydrant fixed while they were repairing the water line. This was submitted twice to them and the fire chief has also submitted work orders for the repairs.
His statements were, in essence, that his hands are tied and he has to get permission to turn on a hydrant to test and his reports are not acted on.
Why wasn’t the hydrant repaired when they were working on the Imperial Mill line on Jefferson Avenue? I was told the city did not have the money and the hydrant was not a priority. When EPWSA took over, I was told they did not have the money to make the repairs. The city and county said, it was EPWSA’s responsibility.
Now all are pointing fingers at each other like a merry-go-round.
Who can I or anyone else get to step up and fix a problem we’ve had since 1940-1941, one that's gone on for approximately 75 years? My taxes keep going up and up and the county spent money to extend the water line from Jefferson Avenue down Lower Harmony Road (over five miles) and they can’t fix a hydrant? Who is representing us and looking after the city?
I need your help to get the city to get things done on a known time frame. I know the city has received a federal grant to upgrade the water line on Jefferson Avenue. Where is that money and how is it being used? The money was approved about 13 years ago. What has been done?
Let’s move on and resolve who is going to do what and when.
Enough is enough!
Henry A. Karwisch
(Editor's note: The following sentence is from a story that appeared in the Oct. 6 edition of The Messenger: "Of the city’s 405 hydrants, 41 are defective. According to a list provided at the EPWSA meeting, 35 of them are listed as having 'no pressure.'")
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