Residents angered with water utility Pluris over rate hike, dirty water



ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - An Orange County neighborhood is having serious trouble with dirty water.

Not only do the pipes break and studies have found bacteria in the water, but neighbors told WFTV their water company, Pluris, doesn't even bother to tell them when there's a problem.

WFTV's Kenneth Craig found out the company is planning a price hike.

Some people who live in Wedgefield said the water has even made them sick.

"If you pay for it, you need to be able to drink the water," said resident Deborah Linn.

Linn said she won't dare drink the water that's coming out of her pipes.

It's the same story for hundreds of other Wedgefield residents who feel the same way.

For years the community has battled rate hikes and water quality. Now the problem is with water utility Pluris and recently their anger turned to outrage when they had three water line breaks in just a week in a half.

Many residents claim they never got boil water notices or got them late. Hundreds drank dirty water and some said it made them sick.

Neighborhood leaders have desperately reached out to the utility, but they said its efforts are a joke.

A big part of the problem residents said is that the company isn't taking this seriously. Only after they complained, the company put up homemade signs just a few feet away.

It became even more concerning when water samples tested positive for Coliform bacteria and fecal matter.

Further tests came back clean, but residents aren't satisfied. And they were just slapped with a 15 percent rate increase.

"It was salt to the wounds," said Linn.

Residents here have launched a petition demanding the water company clean up its act.

WFTV spoke with officials at the water company who said they want to work with the residents.