West Farms woman loses water to her home after city contractor breaks pipeline

A West Farms woman says she lost water to her home after a city contractor hit a pipeline.

On Thursday, Carmen Rivera says landscapers hired by the city's parks department were cutting down trees when a limb dropped on a water main line in front of her home.

The incident disrupted water service to her home so she called 311 to see who was responsible for fixing the problem. A 311 operator directed her to speak with someone at the Department of Environmental Protection. When she called the DEP, a representative told her that it was her responsibility to fix the broken pipe. The DEP says it is not responsible for fixing service lines to private homes.

Unhappy with what she had been told, Rivera proceeded to call her Community Board. Once the members of the Community Board got involved, the parks department immediately contacted the contractor, who in the end fixed the problem.

A spokesperson for the DEP says if a problem like Rivera's happens to another homeowner, the owner should call a plumber, have them fix the pipe and then file a claim with the city's comptroller.

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