Williamson Co., IL retirement home dealing with water main crisis

Williamson Co., IL retirement home dealing with water main crisis

HERRIN, IL (KFVS) - The water is flowing in certain parts of southern Illinois again after the big water main break this week, but officials are still asking the public to still conserve water so that hospitals and nursing homes have more.

Reflections Memory Care, a retirement home in Williamson County luckily had reserve tanks to keep the water flowing, but they're still conserving, not knowing when everything will be back to normal.

Bob Vohs lives at the retirement home and says he and other residents were scared when they heard about the water crisis.

"I was a little worried I couldn't get anything to drink," Vohs said. "A lot of people could die not having water. Poor people that don't have money. I don't want  to see that."

Right when Executive Director Kasi Chase heard the new she sent staff out to buy extra water supplies in multiple stores but couldn't find any.

Luckily the retirement home still had water on site inside underground reserve tanks when everything else shut off.

"Well my housekeeper started filling up buckets with water so we would be able to flush the toilet," Chase said. "And my dietary manager started filling up pots and pans so that she would be able to use the water to cook the food."

Water running to the nursing home has turned back on and they plan to continue boiling all of the water they consume, but Chase says they have a backup plan in the case where they can get more water from their second location.

"They're on a different water supply," Chase said.  "The directors over there, her husband has access to a water truck so we were going to have them bring water to us if it became a long-term issue because yesterday whenever we found out about we heard it could be three to five days. That is enormous for our community for as many residents as we have."

Chase is also grateful cities are encouraging residents to conserve water so facilities like theirs can have enough to care for residents.

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"I definitely think it's a priority to conserve water. We've tried to cut back on as much as we can here, even though we are a health care type of community," Chase said.

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