The sound of running water has become a luxury to some living in the small town of Brenton. The town’s water system was built over 50 years ago and has seen its fair share of wear and tear. Residents have sometimes gone days without running water because of these circumstances.
This was the case for Tommy Knotts, the pastor at Brenton Baptist Church. His water was shut off for three weeks because of leaky pipes. Knotts said he had to walk across the the street to take a shower and hauled jugs of water back to his home.
“It’s cold outside so you have to come over here and take a bath and stay over here until you get warm and all your hair is dry, and then haul it back over to the house and you have to bring all of your towels and things with us,” Knotts explained.
According to Knotts, this issue has gone on for years. The problem was caused by aging pipes and not enough money or manpower to fix them. The Brenton PSD has one maintenance person who does not have transportation to get from house to house.
The town of Brenton turned to the Wyoming County Commission for help. Silas Mullins, President of the Wyoming County Commission, said they are aware of the problem and they are doing everything they can to solve it.
“It is an ongoing challenge for us because of the age and the deterioration of the pipes,” Mullins explained.
Mullins said the commission is in the process of a complete overhaul of the Brenton water system. Their goal is to bring water down from Pineville PSD, which is something Mullins explained has been accomplished in the town of Wyoming.
“They have to have another water source and the water source is the Pineville Water system. It is now in Wyoming and from there it’ll go through the communities of Marianna and Brenton,” Mullins said.
According to Mullins, this multi-million dollar project could take up to seven years to complete due to the amount of funding needed. This news was not promising to Knotts, who will have to spend several more winters with leaky pipes.
“That has always been the talk that we’re going to get it. But when we’re out of water now and we get a seven year promise, that is not too encouraging to me,” Knotts said.
However, Mullins assured residents that something is being done.
“I tell the people that are being serviced by the Brenton PSD not to give up hope, just to be patient. These things take time, but it will be put in the ground,” Mullins said.
Mullins spoke with a contractor to temporarily fix the issues in Brenton. When 59News called and visited the office of Brenton PSD, there was no answer.