While the City of Gulfport wrestles with ongoing complaints about outrageous water bills, some neighbors are wondering why the city is wasting water with a leaking fire hydrant.
Leaky hydrants don't normally make the news. But this one is an exception.
The thing that caught our attention is how long this hydrant has been a problem. Folks on 20th Street say it's been leaking for five years or longer.
One woman who's already complained to the city more than once, urged WLOX News to check it out.
"It's always this wet. It always runs just like this, just like you see it now. It's always running like this," said Linda Quince, as she pointed out the leaky fire hydrant.
She wants to get the City of Gulfport's attention. The hydrant on 20th Street didn't start leaking a short time ago. It's been a problem since at least 1998.
"I guess they don't really think it's a problem with us because it's just leaking from the fire hydrant. But we always feel like, if they're losing water like this, somebody's paying for it," said Quince.
Robert Bolton shares her concerns.
"I've been here, been living here six years almost. And it's been leaking ever since, since I've been here," said Bolton, who lives across the street from the aging fire plug.
He says folks complain about the standing water mess, the mosquitoes and the road deteriorating.
"A lot of people would like to see it fixed. Everybody in the neighborhood would like to see it fixed," he explained.
Linda Quince was somewhat encouraged by a recent visit by public works crews after her latest complaint. They talked about fixing the hydrant and laying a new water line.
"I don't get frustrated over things like that. I just be persistent," she said.
Public works director, Chris Riemann, says the repair work will require installing a special valve so they won't have to interrupt water service to such a large area.
That work is scheduled for late this week or early next.