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Wake County Neighborhood Struggles With Well Water Woes

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WAKE COUNTY — Despite all the rain, one Wake County neighborhood is desperate for water. The quality of their well water has been called into question.

Unlike most families, Karen Fitzgerald and her Neuse Crossing neighbors do not take tap water for granted.

"We cannot cook with it. We cannot drink with it," Karen says. "We only take showers because you shouldn't lay in the bath too long."

State environmentalists told neighbors not to drink the water months ago after studies found high levels of calcium and manganese in the subdivision's well water. Some frustrated families blame the water for health problems ranging from kidney stones to hair loss.

Caked with sediment, the Fitzgeralds' dishwasher is now useless. They have a hard time getting their clothes clean in the hard water.

A refrigerator in the garage holds their drinking water. Each week, they go to relatives in Raleigh to fill old milk and juice jugs. It is all one big hassle.

"We keep on getting the runaround from everybody," she says. "We have no choice. We need clean water. We need good water that we can drink."

The Raleigh City Council gave the city manager Tuesday the go-ahead Tuesday to start working out a plan to pump city water to the frustrated families. However, Neuse Crossing homeowners would likely be forced to pay for hookup.

Ed Fitzgerald says he is ready and willing, anything to end the frustration.

"Nothing's ever done. Period," he says. "I'm not a chemist. I just want to drink water."

The Neuse Crossing bailout plan is still in the negotiation stage. The subdivision would not be annexed.

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Cullen Browder, Reporter
Greg Clark, Photographer
Kamal Wallace, Web Editor

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