With water service still uncertain for many Killeen residents, volunteers both local and from out of state were on hand Sunday to help those who needed water and other items.
The City of Killeen established three water filling locations for residents: at Killeen Water & Sewer, at 805 W. Jasper Drive, which first opened Thursday, the Community Center Complex Ball Fields, at 2201 E. Veterans Memorial Blvd., and Haynes Elementary School at 3309 W. Canadian River Loop.
All three were open Sunday, with city employees on hand to help residents fill containers they brought from home with water.
Early Sunday afternoon, Killeen Mayor Jose Segarra said water was available with no lines at Haynes Elementary School, thanks to Fort Hood.
Jasmine Sanders, of Killeen, got water at the Killeen Water & Sewer station about 11:30 a.m.
“I haven’t had water at my house for a whole week,” Sanders said.
City Spokeswoman Hilary Shine said all three water stations would be open again Monday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
“We don’t have water off to any area,” Shine said by email on Sunday morning. “Some areas don’t have water because there has not been enough water in the system to pressurize the lines. Now that we are making progress with private line leaks, water levels are rising and pressurizing so water can now reach more areas.”
Chris Wieland, of Murfreesboro, Tenn., brought food and water to the Killeen Special Events Center, and with the help of Killeen native and Lampasas County resident Luis Gonzales, helped give out eggs, water and other food items to residents who stopped by.
“My kids challenged me on Tik-Tok,” Wieland said about how the donation drive got started, adding that his online followers were asked to donate $1 each. “We raised a little over $7,000 in 48 hours. It’s been phenomenal.”
In addition to food items, Wieland said he had Walmart gift cards to give out, and as the owner of a landscaping and home maintenance business, he also brought PVP pipe for residents who need plumbing repairs after last week’s freezing temperatures.
Killeen remains in Stage 5 water restrictions, so water usage should be limited to essential purposes only until further notice. A citywide boil water order remains in effect, so all water should be boiled for at least 2 minutes prior to consumption.
Private property leaks continue to drain the supply of water. The city asks residents to check for leaks as soon as possible and to report them immediately to 254-501-6320 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Residents are also asked to report leaks they see in neighborhoods.
“Because of the cooperation of the public, we have seen significant progress in containing leaks,” Shine said Sunday. “Water levels across the city are beginning to rise, which will create both supply and pressure. The vigilance of the public and adherence to water restrictions are speeding the restoration of services to all residents. Thank you for your cooperation and patience.”
In Copperas Cove, the Mountain Top Pressure Plane remained under a boil water notice, according to a city news release, but efforts to get water there were underway.
“Once you begin to get water coming out of your faucets you may shut the water off,” residents were advised in the release. “You will experience air when you open faucets back up later, but will know your lines are not frozen and this will help conserve water to restore pressure. Also, continue to monitor water lines on your property for any leaks or issues. If you experience a leak and cannot turn your water off, you may call 254-547-8222 opt. 1 to request assistance from Water Distribution on-call staff.”
Harker Heights also remains under a boil water notice.
“The water system continued to stabilize overnight, and all residences should have pressure at this time,” said Jerry Bark, the city’s assistant city manger, in a Sunday news release. “Residents should expect to be under the boil water notice and to conserve water for this entire week to come. It is no longer necessary to drip faucets.”
Heights residents can report water leaks the city at 254-681-6779.
Two Notices lifted
Boil water notices were lifted Sunday for residents in Lampasas and in the Belton area serviced by the 439 Water Supply Corporation, according to news releases.