City workers fix a water pipeline on Yates Road in Killeen. This has been the third time the city has come to repair the line.

Edmond Jones, resident of Yates Road in south Killeen, said that this was the third time this year that the city has had to come out and fix the water line near his home.

“It’s terrible,” he said Monday morning. “I call that water company and the city and we have complained about it before. They repaired the one across the street about two months ago.”

Jones said that about every two to three months that same place on both sides of the street the workers are digging up on the water line.

“It breaks frequently,” he said. “You can’t tell me if they fix it right it wouldn’t be breaking that often. It is sorry work and I left a message with the water company. It’s frustrating, and they were supposed to replace this water line about 10 years ago. The water lines are too small and are about 30 or more years old.”

Jones said there is no fire hydrant on the street, and the city annexed the area over 10 years ago.

“We are still wondering why they are charging us for water runoff,” he said. “Nobody can give us an answer why they are charging us. Through the years they are always fixing the water line down the street at that same place, repairing the same water line and the workers will tell you that the city tells them to come out and fix it.”

Another resident of Yates Road is James Ralston, who has lived there since 1998. He said the situation is “frustrating.”

“When they annexed us they made all of these promises to us that wasn’t in writing,” he said. “The guys that are trying to fix the line are doing their job. These lines are old west Bell County lines from before the annexation that the city took over and renamed and raised our taxes.”

Ralston said the city just blows them off when they complain about the water lines.

“Ours is three to four inches most,” he said of the size of the water pipe. “It’s is supposed to be six inches minimum and there is no plan to fix it. They are nice about it but nothing gets done which to me is them blowing me off.”

Yates Road, as far as Ralston knows, is not on the list to get fixed.

“There are areas that were annexed later or after us that have gotten fixed,” said Ralston. “The city has the highest ever insurance rating, but we don’t because we don’t have a fire hydrant and water lines that don’t meet code. Our taxes are full blown taxes and they do not give us slack for it.”

City of Killeen spokesperson Hilary Shine said that this area’s water infrastructure was installed and operated by West Bell Water Supply Corporation.

“The area was annexed by the city about 10 years ago,” Shine said by email. “There have been three water line breaks in this area over the past two years. Repairs have been possible each time.”

Willie Mitchell, another resident in the neighborhood said he was lucky enough to take his shower in the morning.

“They turned the water off today at approximately 8 a.m. this morning,” he said Monday. “I got up around 5:30 this morning, but the thing is that they never tell us or the neighborhood when they are turning the water off.”

The city issued a boil-water notice for the Yates Road area at 10 a.m. Monday, after repairs for the broken water line were already underway.

Herald staff writer Steve Wilson contributed to this report.

csmith@kdhnews.com | 254-501-7562

General Assignments/ Sports Reporter

Cade Smith joined the Herald in July 2020. He is a 2020 graduate of Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas graduating with a Bachelor's of Science in Communication (Journalism) with a minor in Criminal Justice.

(4) comments


Let's be fair to the employees out there working. They work hard for us day in and day out. Thank you water and sewer employees for your hard work and having to deal with us citizens that don't appreciate what you all do.


Welcome Cade Smith. Enjoyed reading your article. I look forward to more of your work.


Copy: 'City of Killeen spokesperson Hilary Shine said that this area’s water infrastructure was installed and operated by West Bell Water Supply Corporation.'

Continuation of copy: “The area was annexed by the city about 10 years ago,” Shine said by email'. End of copy.

It's the same old 'Song and Dance Routine that has been plaguing this city for years'. The city can get a Bond for for a new Water Treating Plant, but they can't seem to perform maintenance, and/or preventative maintenance on a line that the city took over 10 years ago. And if one just asks the question, 'WHY', you can find the answer, 'This city is more concerned about growth of this bedroom community than it is in maintaining this city and the welfare of it's citizens.

Yes, I believe that for a city to prosper it has to draw the line between the growth of the city, which includes developing an industrial base and building new housing. This would include a new base for development of city infrastructure in which new water lines, sewer lines and roads are to be built in conjunction with new homes, but it comes with the necessity of maintaining the older sections of the city as the price that must be paid.

When a water or sewer line continues to develop leaks, then that old line, at a minimum should be ultrasonically checked as to the soundness of that particular section of line and if it is found to be deficient, then that section of line should be replaced before the next breakdown occurs. That is called 'preventative maintenance'. That is apparently what is lacking with our city water and sewer service. Tonight there is a city council meeting where the council will hear 'Taken from the city council Agenda, DS-20-050: Discuss Water & Sewer Rate Study'. In my opinion, ya'll should attend that meeting starting at 5:PM so that the city council can hear first hand just what you are talking about.


well it is time to sue the city of Killeen..... but be nice about it since they are nice at the bend over time for you all they only understand it when you take their money if not get used to it or as the city tells you when they give you your full bill SUCK IT UP tax payer.

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