Late night shenanigan leaves water levels low in Gladewater

By Samantha Jordan - email

GLADEWATER, TX (KLTV) – Water is climbing back to normal levels after the caps were removed off of five fire hydrants Wednesday morning in Gladewater.

Around 4:30 Wednesday morning, city officials were notified of a possible 12" water main break by Veolia Environmental Services, the company contracted by the city to manage city water.

Gladewater residents were notified by SCADA, the automated emergency notification system that sends emails and texts.

Luckily, the problem wasn't as bad as city officials hoped. What may have been a possible prank could have left the city of Gladewater in a danger place.

"Whether it be a prank or someone who's doing it just for kicks its certainly not a laughing matter it's a shear problem because it puts the city in jeopardy especially if there's a fire," said Sean Pates, Gladewater City Manager.

At some point Tuesday night five fire hydrants were cracked open by unauthorized personnel in the North East Side of town.

Pate says for about five hours these hydrants leaked a steady flow of water that resulted in the loss of 500,000 gallons worth of water.

"Had there been a fire you would have been running a sheer risk of not having enough water to put out hat fire and at the same time not having enough for our residents to be able to use," said Pates, "You're talking about life and safety its an extreme problem and sometimes people they don't realize that something like a harmless prank is certainly not when it comes to water, because water is such a valuable asset."

Pate says tampering with city water is a felony and should not be taken lightly.  Police are investigating and will make arrests when they find who's responsible.

Now the city manager is asking for your help. If you see someone tampering with a fire hydrant or water infrastructure, that is not in an official vehicle please contact authorities.

Any activity out of the norm should be reported to the Gladewater Police Department at (903) 845-2166.

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