FOX 8 Defenders: Family goes five days with no water

New Orleans, La. -- For days, she's had little to no water pressure inside her New Orleans East home.  The mother of six grew frustrated, especially after daily calls to the Sewerage and Water Board to get to the bottom of the problem.  Monday she turned to the FOX 8 Defenders for help and got results.

"When you cut the water on, it's not coming out fast enough, and then it's eventually gonna stop.  If you let it run a little while, it's gonna stop," said Patrice Lewis.

She showed us the strongest water pressure she's had in days in her kitchen, and that looked a little heavier than a trickle.  The bathroom faucet wasn't any better, and the faucet handle was turned as far as it could go.  The bathtub appeared to be even worse, and Lewis said, forget flushing a toilet.  "We have to get a bucket, fill it up just to flush the toilet," explained Lewis.

Lewis told FOX 8 she's been without water for five days since Thursday, and with five kids living at home, she said the laundry is starting to pile up.  Lewis said her family's been going back and forth to a relative's house to shower -- but with school starting this week, that's going to be tough.

Lewis said she's made calls to the Sewerage and Water Board since Thursday.  According to Lewis, an inspector came out on Friday.

"He said they had a defect in the meter and that was another department so he was going to refer them... I mean give them the paperwork," said Lewis.

As far as she knows, her neighbors have water, and while the neighborhood is dry, the ground all around Lewis' water meter is saturated.  "They didn't have any water Friday, Saturday or Sunday.  They didn't have water out there, but they have it out there today," said Lewis.

Monday afternoon, the Sewerage and Water Board told FOX 8 that it replaced Lewis' meter Friday, but earlier Monday it was too hard to tell because the area under the water meter cover was filled with water.

After a call from the FOX 8 Defenders, S&WB says it sent an investigator to track down the problem.  Several hours later, Lewis told FOX 8, the water in her home was flowing again.

The FOX 8 Defenders and volunteers with the National Council of Jewish Women are here to take consumer concerns.  If you have one, call them at 1-877-670-6397.