Maple Heights condo complex still without water service for more than a week

Broken pipe in foreclosed unit blamed for delays

MAPLE HEIGHTS, Ohio - Nancy Tench showed NewsChannel5 the small trickle of water coming out of the kitchen faucet in her rented Maple Heights condo.

Tench and other tenants have been without water service at the condo complex for more than a week after a water supply line to the complex burst during last week's sub-zero temperatures.

Tench explained she called her landlord, but the broken pipe is located in a vacant unit that is currently in foreclosure, and so far the bank involved has done nothing to make repairs.

"We've been using bottled water. We even took some snow in the house and let that melt," said Tench. "I've been going to my mother's house to take a shower and wash my clothes."

"I called the city -- the city says it can't do nothing about it. The fire department, they went in there to shut the water off, but they wouldn't come back."

Tench is concerned she and her neighbors will be ordered to vacate because a lack of water service is a health violation.

"Bottom line -- they actually told us we have to get up and go, we have to just leave our properties and go," explained Tench. "I'm not sure where we're going to go. I don't know, I don't know."

On Your Side contacted the landlord who owns the unit occupied by Tench. NewsChannel5 worked with the Maple Heights Law Director, and obtained access to the foreclosed unit so repairs can be made.

NewsChannel5 also contacted Maple Heights Mayor Jeffery Lansky, who is taking immediate action in the search for a solution.

"We're going to try and help these individuals,' said Lansky. "We're going to contact the health department, we'll see if we can gain entry into the building."

"We can't get a search warrant to go in, that was brought up, but no crime has been committed, at least not yet anyway. We'll get our law department on this. We're on it. We're trying." 

Tenants who are dealing without water service for more than 24 hours should contact their city building department and health department.

According to Ohio law, a landlord or property owner must provide water service to tenants at all times, even if that tenant is behind on rent.

Units that do not provide water service to tenants may be de deemed uninhabitable, and the unit owner could face a fine.

NewsChannel5 and newsnet5.com will follow up on this developing story.

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