Fukushima residents worry nuclear plant's wastewater release in a few weeks will be another setback
Within weeks, the tsunami-hit Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant is expected to start releasing treated radioactive wastewater into the sea, a highly contested plan facing fierce protests in and outside Japan.
‘DRAINED’: $15K water bill removed from single mom after KPRC 2 investigation
When Andrea Harclerode contacted KPRC 2 Investigates last February, she had already been asking the Houston water department to help straighten out her meter and billing issues since 2019. A bill for more than $15,000 was the last straw. Three months after KPRC 2 investigative reporter Amy Davis got involved, the city finally resolved the issue.
UN chief urges 'game-changing' commitments on clean water
The United Nations chief is urging the first world conference on water in more than 45 years to address the “21st century emergency” that is wasting the world’s most important resource and has left billions of people without clean water and basic sanitation.
‘I’m very confused.’ Retired Houston couple stressed over $2,000 water bill
Hundreds of Houston water customers who have paid their bills on time every month are getting slapped with enormous charges months later with no explanation. The KPRC 2 Investigates team is digging into the billing nightmares that are leaving customers “DRAINED.”
KPRC 2 investigates outdated water maps costing city of Houston millions
Water leaks and pipe breaks is an expensive problem in Houston. In our ‘DRAINED’ KPRC 2 Investigation we've learned the reason it often takes so long to fix these issues is because the city of Houston has wrong and outdated water pipe maps.
Levels ‘slightly above industry standards’ of Legionella bacterium found in water supply in Ben Taub Hospital, officials say
Three areas with levels slightly above industry standards of Legionella bacterium were found in the Neuro-Psychiatric Center on the Ben Taub Hospital campus, according to Harris Health System.
Hug a tree, or at least water it!
The devastating 2011 drought left 301million trees dead across Texas and while a drought can certainly increase tree problems of insects and disease, the real bottom line is that trees need water. And right now, most of them aren’t getting enough. Water allows trees to transport nutrients from their roots to their leaves. Almost all of the water moving through a tree is used to keep stomata open, which are the pores that let in carbon dioxide, allowing a tree to carry out photosynthesis. Without water, known as hydraulic failure, trees have to depend on stored sugars and starches and they’ll run out if the drought continues long enough. There are other reasons trees die during drought, according to this study by the National Science Foundation, but lack of water leads the list.
Rosenberg water might smell, taste differently in the coming weeks; Here’s why, authorities say
The City of Rosenberg said its water system will temporarily convert the disinfectant used in the water distribution system from chloramine to free chlorine. The conversion will begin on June 6, and continue through June 26.
KPRC 2 Investigates: Here’s how much more you can expect to pay for winter bills
At a time when it seems like just about everything is more expensive, we want to warn you about potential sticker shock when it comes to your bills. You’ll probably be paying more for several of your utility bills this winter. Our KPRC 2 Investigates team is here with what you need to know to prepare.
These photos tell you everything you need to know about California’s drought
Just this week, a major Southern California water agency declared a water supply alert for the first time in seven years, and is asking residents to voluntarily conserve. Many of the state’s counties are already under a state of drought emergency.
What exactly was Mark Zuckerberg riding in that viral Fourth of July video?
If you’ve been scrolling around on social media this month, then you may have noticed that over the Fourth of July weekend, Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg was riding on some sort of wakeboard on a lake with an American flag in tow.
Despite 20% of generators failing during Winter Storm Uri, city officials proclaim ‘infrastructure performed well’
Natural disasters, whether it’s a vicious hurricane or a crippling winter storm, they force municipalities and agencies into management mode. While managing the unpredictable is challenging, the approach is straightforward.
What you should do if you get a big water bill as a result of the freeze
HOUSTON – Water leaks from broken pipes during the state’s big freeze caused big bills for thousands of City of Houston customers. If you have already received a big bill for water usage during the time of the freeze, Houston Public Works Department says you should pay on the due date, but don’t pay the abnormally high amount. You should pay the amount on your previous water bill that was more in line with your normal usage. When you receive your April bill, Houston Public Works says you will notice an adjustment. Public Works says its software will flag accounts with abnormally high usage over the week of the big freeze.
A quarter of all Houston Water customers had a leak during the winter storm, city says
(AP Photo/David J. Phillip, File)HOUSTON – An estimated 25% of all Houston Water customers experienced a leak on their property during the winter storm, the city said Tuesday. The statistic is based on Houston Public Works’ data from water meter readings. Of Houston’s single-family residential customers, an estimated 50,000 had no flow or constant flow, indicating a leak on the property, the city said in a news release. The city said Houston Public Works received more than 11,000 calls for help with water service the weeks during and after the event. If you are still without water service, you’re advised to call 311.
LIST: Food and water distribution sites in the Houston area
HOUSTON – Many local businesses and organizations have opened food and water distribution sites in the Houston area in the wake of the recent winter storms. Various distribution sites pop up daily, so please keep checking this list if you’re in need. Houston Community College-North Forest CampusTexas State Representative Senfronia Thompson, NACC Disaster Services, Teamsters Union, Houston Community College (HCC)- North Forest campus, HCC Trustee Rhonda Skillern-Jones, Peoples United Summit, and other volunteer groups host water and food distribution in northeast Houston. The organizers will provide food and water for about 1,000 vehicles. Pet owners will receive free pet food, supplies, and information on additional resources such as the Houston Humane Society’s free spay/neuter program.
Here are winter storm relief resources for Sugar Land residents
SUGAR LAND, Texas – The Sugar Land City Council recently approved steps to help residents impacted by last week’s winter storm. “Residents of Sugar Land have endured conditions no one should have to experience during the past week,” said Sugar Land Mayor Joe Zimmerman in a release. AdCalculations for 2021 winter averages will be based on last year’s average to ensure excessive water usage related to the recent winter storm doesn’t create higher than normal winter averages, according to the city. AdThis will include the following items through May 1:Permit fees for repairs needed as a result of the winter storm will be temporarily waived. Contractors registering with the city to perform repairs related to the winter storm will have their annual registration fee waived.
Disinfectants blamed for reports of smelly water in Houston
HOUSTON – A higher concentration of normal disinfectants in Houston’s water system is causing an odor that has some people concerned, according to officials. According to Houston Public Works, a blend of chlorine and ammonia, called chloramine, are used to clean surface water. Where these two water sources carrying these disinfectants combine is causing the stink. RELATED READ: Complaints of strange-smelling water across Houston area after boil water notice lifted“This is a harmless odor that we try to avoid in our water system, but right now Houston Water is disinfecting the drinking water at higher concentrations in response to last week’s water emergency,” Carol Haddock, director of Houston Public Works. AdOfficials said the disinfectants are being reduced to normal concentrations, which should reduce the smell in two to three days.
Lights may be on, but the suffering isn’t over
HOUSTON – Texas Senate and House hearings are only the beginning of the investigations into our state’s power grid failures during a blistering winter storm. Ten days after the winter storm blanketed Texas, Anderson still has no water in her Yorkdale neighborhood home in Northwest Houston. Like millions of Texans, Anderson lost power as temperatures dropped, pipes in the ceiling froze and then cracked. Hearings in the House and Senate will start the work to get those answers. We should have taken action then, what prevented that from happening, why did we not take the action?”
Thousands flock to food, water giveaways across Houston area
RICHMOND, Texas – Thousands showed up to community food and water giveaways in Rosenberg, Richmond and Missouri City Wednesday. Some waited for hours to make sure they would get some food and water. The need for food and water still so great for many Houston area families. They depend on these food giveaways and say this is saving lives. Boys and Girls Club will also host several more giveaways this week.
Houston distributes thousands of cases of water after pipes freeze in week’s severe winter storm
HOUSTON – The City of Houston handed out thousands of cases of water to Houstonians Friday. “We’ve lost gas, water, lights, food, but we don’t lose hope,” said Percy McGee. He and hundreds of others waited outside Delmar Stadium, where the city started distributing thousands of cases of bottled water. RELATED STORY: LIST: Food and water distribution sites in the Houston area“No water, electric, just have to make that big sacrifice. Also, the city planned to deliver bottled water to disable people who cannot make it to one of them.
Houstonians rush to grocery stores in search of bottled water but find mostly empty shelves
Folks all across the Houston area in search of food and water started lining up outside of grocery stores at about 7 a.m. Thursday. Most stores were out of bottled water in a matter of minutes leaving shoppers like Adrienne Parker no choice but to continue searching. Others told KPRC 2 they will find ways to collect water and boil it as part of the city’s boiling water notice. We are also working closely with hospitals and food banks, along with city representatives to ensure that essential organizations have access to bottled water. We are thankful that almost all of our Kroger stores across Greater Houston are now back up and operational, and we look forward to serving our communities.
Mayor Turner, city officials provide update on city’s water system
Mayor Turner provided an update on the city’s water system and an announcement on bottled water distribution at an 11 a.m. news briefing Thursday. Houston residents Wednesday were warned to boil their water -- if they had the power to do so-- after water pressure plummeted throughout the Houston-area. A combination of bursting pipes and equipment failures at water distribution facilities during the freezing weather caused the water pressure to fall, said Carol Haddock, director of public works. In a news briefing Wednesday, city officials said water pressure would improve throughout the day and expected pressure levels to stabilize and return to an operational range before the end of the day on Thursday. After water pressure returns to normal levels, a 24-hour observation period on water samples must occur before the boil water notice can be lifted.
VIDEO: Stunning footage from inside area home shows the extent of water damage
HOUSTON – A video from northeast Harris County shows the mess a broken waterline from frozen pipes can bring. Video of the home -- said to be on Highway 90 at Sheldon Road – shows water falling on sodden insulation and sheetrock strewn over furniture in what looks to be a living room. Watch the video in the player above. Have you experienced similar damage in the severe weather? Let us know.
This is why you should stop your dripping faucet right now, officials say
HOUSTON – Local officials are asking people to stop their dripping faucets -- a measure aimed at avoiding a pipe freeze -- now in the wake of severe weather. Temperatures are no longer at levels that will result in pipes freezing...stop dripping water faucets. Pressure on several water systems is dangerously low due to broken pipes and power outages. Conserve as much water as possible #houwx #txwx #hounews — Jeff Lindner (@JeffLindner1) February 17, 2021It’s a similar message from officials across the area. The pipe freeze possibility, they say, is over for now.
Boil water notice: This is what people are saying as water service issues persist across Texas
HOUSTON – Some cities have issued boil water notices and others have had to shut off water service across the Houston area. For some people, this is in addition to power outages, leaving many with lots to say on social media. Here are some of the things people are saying on social media about the ongoing situation. a being able to complete basic hygienic activities without the use of water. #texaswinterstorm #TexasWeather #boilwater pic.twitter.com/jZEIiq22VC — haydenj (@haydenj1228) February 17, 2021#Texas #BoilWater noticeHopefully the power will be on so you can have safe water to drink.#WaterIsLife https://t.co/3ff4ZuZPTy — JenniferC (@JenniferCWA) February 17, 2021
Turner says maintaining water pressure in Houston ‘becoming increasingly difficult’
HOUSTON – The water system in Houston on Tuesday is operating in emergency mode and officials are urging people to use water sparingly. Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said in a tweet that “it is becoming increasingly difficult” to maintain water pressure. The City is working very hard to maintain water pressure but it is becoming increasingly difficult. There are 2 requests: please do not run water to prevent pipes from freezing and turn off water if pipes have burst. The Houston Public Works Department said in a tweet that people should only use water for “health & safety reasons.”Houston’s water & wastewater systems are operating at emergency pressure levels and experiencing system-wide low water pressure.
Cirque Italia, the first-ever traveling Italian water circus, stops in Katy this weekend
HOUSTON – Check out ‘Cirque Italia’ the first-ever traveling Italian water circus that will be performing their first shows of the brand-new 2021 tour! This is an innovative and unique production, (the only one of its kind in the country), and this weekend they are stopping under the blue and white swirly tent right near Katy Mills Mall. The story begins with our Ringmaster “Clown Rafinha” fishing when he unexpectedly catches a bottle with a treasure map stuffed inside. His journey takes the audience through the high seas, dreams of angelic aerialists, pirate fights, and more. You will see swashbucklers balancing upside down on a rum barrel, juggling knives, and even one having a run-in with a mermaid.
Boil water order issued for part of Baytown
A boiling pot of water is seen in this undated file image. BAYTOWN, Texas – A water main break Tuesday has prompted a boil water order to be issued for parts of Baytown. Officials said the order is for residents and businesses located along the Interstate 10 corridor from Spur 330 to Garth Road. Water provided by the City of Baytown Public Water System should be boiled for two minutes and cooled before it is used for drinking or other consumption, officials said. Repairs to the broken water main are underway, officials said.
Testing local drinking water for brain-eating amoeba
LAKE JACKSON, Texas – In September, news broke that a brain-eating amoeba was responsible for the death of a 6-year-old Lake Jackson boy. RELATED: Lake Jackson residents in need of safe water as brain eating amoeba contaminates water supplyMcIntyre died September 8, just days after his trip to a Lake Jackson splash pad. According to health officials, a parasite, called naegleria fowleri, otherwise known as the brain-eating amoeba was in the water. Cities testing for brain-eating amoebaKPRC 2 Investigates has learned some other cities are now testing their water for this same amoeba, but many are not. Most districts not testing water for amoebaWe contacted 80 municipalities and cities in Harris, Montgomery, Fort Bend, Brazoria and Waller counties.
UPDATE: Boil water notice lifted for these neighborhoods in the Lake Livingston area
HOUSTON – Authorities have lifted a boil water notice for the following subdivisions in the Lake Livingston area: Natasha Heights, Lakeland Hideaway, Cherokee Forest, and Green Acres. The Lake Livingston Water Supply Corporation’s general manager Kim Click told KPRC 2 the notice has been lifted Wednesday afternoon. The water authority had issued a statement that said the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality cited low chlorine in its systems, which prompted the boil water notice. All customers are asked to boil their water prior to consumption (e.g., washing hands/face/brushing teeth, drinking, etc). Children, seniors, and people with weakened immune systems are particularly vulnerable to harmful bacteria, and all customers should follow these directions, according to the memo.
MAPPED: More than 100K gallons of wastewater spilled in 5 locations in Houston due to TS Beta, officials say
HOUSTON – Houston officials say more than 100,000 gallons of domestic wastewater have been spilled in five locations in Houston as of 6:30 p.m. Tuesday due to the “intense, sustained, rainfall of greater than 10 inches in the last 24 hours,” during Tropical Storm Beta. LIVE BLOG: Read the latest updates from the developing Tropical Depression Beta hereOfficials with Houston Public Works and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality are monitoring the situation. At present, officials say if you receive your water from the city of Houston, you do not need to boil your drinking water. Here’s a map of where the spills occurred:The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality requires the city to provide residents with the following information in event of a wastewater spill: