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Gushing Leak Leads To $41,000 Water Bill In Abington

BRISTOL, Pa. (CBS) – The water in Ruby Williams’ house from the weekend rains will dry soon enough. It is the water leaking under her Bristol home that worries her.

“That amount of water is enough to fill up three Olympic sized pools,” Williams laughed.

The leak started in March and has not stopped since, gushing out at the rate of 750,000 gallons a month. Williams says she could not afford the $3,500 fix.

Now, her water bill stands at $41,000.

“If I had that kind of money, I wouldn’t be in this situation,” Williams said.

Aqua Pennsylvania, Inc. says the leak was on Williams’ property, and because Williams set up a payment plan, they had no authority as a public utility to cut off the water or fix the leak.

“The payment plan helps everyone generally,” said Tom Geddis, a manager of collections for the water company, “but here, it hurt the situation.”

You cannot see the water on Williams’ property. It likely drained into an underground creek or water bed. Aqua, Inc. came out to the Merlin Street home this weekend to move their service pipe and make the necessary fix cheaper.

Williams says she is ready to have her water running normally again to bring the leak and this saga to an end.

Aqua, Inc. says they will not charge Williams the full amount of her bill. Instead, they will likely charge her an amount much closer to the monthly average, which is $55 a month.

Reported by Oren Liebermann, CBS 3

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  • Katie

    Common sense HAS become a thing of the past…if you knew for several months that you had a leak that you were legally responsible for and that the dollars were adding up daily, then common sense says get it fixed! Instead she chose to just ignore it until the water company did the responsible thing and forced her to make the repairs. Wonder why your water bill is so high? Because of homeowners and landlords that do not make repairs as needed! As an Aqua customer I’m furious that she won’t have to pay for that water! I pay for mine! And it’s true that not all utility companies are government affiliated even though they are subject to the state’s PUC regulations to protect the consumer. And as a consumer, you should know which portion of the service lines are customer owned and which are company owned for all your utilities. Keep in mind that not all water companies have the same regulations so do your research with your company.

  • bob kirby

    Wait! calling a poor person stupid over a leak makes no sense. Her water should have been turned off, the water company waisted hundreds of thousands of gallons. What a stupid world we live in. Once again inept government rules the day. If that were Texas (Major water shortage) the water company Manager would have been fired. Criminal ignorance.

    • Seraphim0

      Utility companies are not always run by the government. At least, not in the United States. Additionally, you meant to use the word “wasted.”

  • The Latest Philadelphia News headlines for Aug 22 2011 : Travel tips, hotels, restaurants, jobs and news | Travel 2 Philadelphia

    […] still a few weeks away but we are watching Irene closely as she spins near the island of Hispaniola.Gushing Leak Leads To Enormous Water Bill In AbingtonThe water in Ruby Williams’ house from the weekend rains will dry soon enough. It is the water […]

  • itz

    Has common sense become a thing of the past? 750,000 gallons a month and the “water” company can’t or won’t do anything. Incredulous

    • anon

      That would be the homeowner’s responsibility, not the water company’s, so no, they can’t do anything.

      • John Little

        The leak is before the water meter out side, that is usually the water companies line, just like the phone company is responsible to the box on your house IDIOT

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