Community's Water Woes Continue in Conklin

By Matt Porter

February 4, 2013 Updated Feb 4, 2013 at 10:19 PM EDT

Town of Conklin, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Poor communication and a lack of clean water for at least eight days have left many homeowners at the Pride Manor Mobile Home community angry and frustrated.

Jackie Vanwert said she's only heard from the management three times in the eight-day saga.

"We had no water yesterday because the well was dry, no one notifies us," Vanwert said. "They haven't been bringing water when they're supposed too, and when they do, it's two gallons here or there. It's just starting to get really frustrating. My daughter couldn't shower this morning for school."

Owner Robert Kurens said his workers have been dealing with multiple leaks of underground pipes.

He said his workers also found above-ground leaks he said should have been reported by residents, but weren't.

Kurens said some residents don't report leaks or keep "heat tape" around their pipes so they don't freeze.

Residents we spoke to said they frequently change their "heat tape" and call promptly if there's a leak.

The problem was thought to be fixed Wednesday after the New York Rural Water Association came in and found the first leak.

Thursday, the water stopped again.

Kurens waited until Monday -- four days -- before calling Rural Water again for their help to find the secondary leaks.

The Rural Water Association is a non-profit company that specializes in helping municipalities and private owners manage and solve problems in water systems.

New York state law considers an interruption of water service lasting more than four hours a public health hazard.

When that occurs, the Broome County Health Department suggests providing one gallon of water per person, per day.

Residents said they are not getting that water from management. They also say communication has dried up.

Peggy Perez, a sister of Jackie Vanwert living in another lot, said she's worried about her kids, including her infant daughter Annia, getting sick from the water.

"We got kids and you can't even like feed them with the water," Perez said, "And she's got formula, and you can't even feed her like formula and stuff because they haven't been bringing the water like their supposed to."

Kurens continues to refuse to appear on camera about the water problems at the park he owns.

He was unable to show how or if he was providing water to his residents.

Complaints can be filed to the Department of Homes and Community Renewal at their hotline 1-800-432-4210.

The DHCR has not returned multiple calls about whether Pride Manor has committed any violations or if there have been any prior complaints against Kurens.

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