Ellis County neighborhood frustrated with quality of water

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Some people in an Ellis County neighborhood say they don't want to drink the water.

One of the water customers shared a video of a bathtub full of brown water. It’s a problem they say happens often. However, the state says there have been no recent violations and no formal complaints lately even though the water company issued a boil water notice on Tuesday.

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality confirmed that it did receive a boil notice from Carroll Water Company on June 14. But some residents say they never received any notification until they actually called the company.  Even though the water is now clear, residents that spoke to FOX 4 said still wouldn’t drink it.

Stephanie Moore's husband, Jacob, took video on Tuesday of the bath water on as he prepared to give his daughters a bath.

"It was just gross. It had this terrible odor to it,” she said. “It smelled like a mix of chlorine and raw sewage and just like stagnant water."

"We have this problem. If not weekly, a couple times a month,” Jacob said.

The Moores have lived in their home in rural Ellis County for three years. They say dealing with the Carroll Water Company is frustrating.

“This is tap water. It should be OK for us,” Stephanie said. “We're now having to pay for filters. We're having to buy bottled water and boil water."

The water was much clearer on Wednesday. We filled a glass of water and let it sit a few minutes. It eventually began to clear. But as the bubbles dissipated, smoke-like fumes appeared to come out of the water.

Several neighbors on the same street had the same complaints.

"I've lived in this area six years, and we've had these problems off and on for six years,” said Nichole Horton. “It's disgusting. I don't like giving it to my dog. So, I definitely won't drink it. And I won't let my daughter drink it, either."

"It's very frustrating. I have three kids that I can't let them drink the water,” said Kathy Chesser. “We buy three or four cases of water week, and that gets expensive."

When FOX 4 Reporter James Rose tried to speak to someone at the Carroll Water Company, he was greeted by a person saying, “Bye! Not talking so… Leave! Now!”

A few minutes later, a man came outside and identified himself as Walter Carroll, the owner of the water company.

"What happened yesterday that made them get real dark brown water?" asked Rose.

"Well, they had a water leak and had to cut the lawn at two to fix it,” Carroll said. “After they fixed it, then it blew out again. Then, I had to fix it again."

Carroll says he has 600 water customers and doesn't care if they don't drink the water.

"I know one thing: they got pure water. Good water,” he said. “Nothing is wrong with it. It's like drinking bottled water."

TCEQ says there have been two complaints in the last five years in that area in October 2017 and in February 2018. Neither complaint alleged discolored water, and no violations were found in either complaint investigations.