EDMOND, Okla. (KFOR) – On Thursday, Logan County homeowners met with water board members for the first time since dozens of water heaters in or near the same neighborhood burst or had valve-issues around the same time earlier this week.
The meeting kicked off with an attorney representing Logan County Rural Water District No. 1 explaining that a “thorough investigation” concluded that the issues happened while an operator was working on a water main break.
“During that repair, the operator made a decision to basically keep the water running from another source from a nearby well,” said the attorney. “So, the idea was to keep the water flowing. Pursuant to that, basically there was a surge in pressure that likely caused some damage.”
He also said that because of a law called the Governmental Torts Claims Act, he’s recommending that the district isn’t liable for the damage this caused. However, no official action was taken on Thursday.
“The district is only going to be responsible for things that happen before that water meter,” said the attorney. “Anything after that water meter is the responsibility of the customer.”
The lawyer added that residents should have a pressure-reducing valve on their water heaters. Although, he said that’s not required by the district’s bylaws.
The recommendation did not sit well with the homeowners in attendance at the meeting. One said he’s already spent thousands of dollars on repairs.
“You’ve got some angry residents here and we pay y’all good money every month and a lot of money during the summers,” said Chris Smith, during the meeting. “I’m 12K into this because a pressure spike happened from y’alls action and it screwed up my house.”
Another homeowner called the recommendation “flipping absurd.”
Brandon Rondon is an insurance company owner based in Edmond. He told KFOR that even if people’s damage is covered by insurance, it’s likely to cost them now and for years to come.
“It’s probably $1,000 deductible, still a lot of money for people when it wasn’t their fault,” said Rondon. “Hot water claims happen on your homeowner’s policy. They’re one of the highest-rated claims. So, their rates are going to skyrocket for the next five years.”
KFOR reached out to the Logan County Rural Water District No. 1 on Friday. They told us they don’t have any additional comments about the meeting.