Created: 01/13/2014 6:13 PM
By: Lauren Hansard, KOB Eyewitness News 4
Thousands of people and three Roswell schools finally have their water back on after being off for nearly 24 hours.
The water authority said a homeowner who wanted to build a new fence is guilty.
He told KOB Eyewitness News 4 he did cut the line, but is not to blame.
On Sunday, Mark Brooks was drilling a hole for a fence post when he drilled right into a water line.
“The water line was not marked," said Brooks.
Brooks said he put in a request to the county water authority, Berrendo Water Co-Op, but they never came out and marked the water lines.
"I knew it wasn't marked," said Brooks.
But he dug anyway.
"I never expected the water line to be that far onto my property either,” said Brooks.
But it was and not only did water gush onto his property for four hours, but it also caused a water outage for an elementary school and two middle schools in the area.
They had to cancel classes today.
And it wasn't just schools, homes were affected. Up to 1,600 homes had either no water pressure or no water at all.
Kim Talbott’s home was one of the ones impacted.
“Thought maybe it would be back going this morning and we got up this morning and there was totally no water whatsoever," said Talbott.
June Emmons lives next door to Brooks. She said crews damaged her driveway trying to fix the water line.
“They disrupted three of my railroad ties out there, and I’m a widow and I have no way of fixing it," said Emmons.
Brooks said he didn’t mean to put his neighbors through so much stress, but claims it wasn’t his fault.
"I wouldn't have hit it, if it would have been marked," said Brooks. "I apologize for any inconvenience, but I did what I was supposed to do."
The water authority said they never received Brooks’ request.
Water was fully restored by noon Monday.
Classes will resume at the three schools Tuesday.