LONGVIEW, Texas (KLTV) - Since Sunday, plumbers in one East Texas county have been working non-stop for the enormous call for pipe repair.
With hundreds of homes having pipes broken or leaking from the winter storm of last week, the call load is endless for plumbers in Longview, and a lack of able-bodied plumbers is making the wait longer.
For the last four days, from sun-up to sundown, crews from Richard Parker Plumbing in Longview have been answering calls at a furious pace.
“Crazy! I mean there’s just so many busted pipes all over the place, just can’t get them all. And everybody’s got a bad story,” says owner Glen Parker.
“We didn’t really know how to get ready for it. There’s only so much you can get ready for,” says plumber German Galvan.
Fixing everything from broken PVC, galvanized metal, flex pipe, even copper.
“We’re having more busted pipe on copper than anything right now,” Glen says.
The flexible ‘PEX” line has become popular, but even that is not 100-percent.
Complicating the issue of the enormous caseload that crews are working on, is the fact that there aren’t enough plumbers to go around.
“That is the number one thing that is hampering us. We need more people,” Parker says.
“We’ve been looking for journeymen, tradesmen, certified plumbers,” says office manager Juanita Coy.
And the calls are still coming in from those who’ve been without water for a week, and are in dire need.
“I have cried with people. We do the best we can. Somebody who can not get up and move around do things, out of electricity, have no water and can not do it themselves, we’re trying to make sure the people who need us the most get taken care of immediately due to health issues,” Juanita says.
They’ll get to as many people every day as they can.
“If we know somebody needs us out there faster, we try to get out there faster,” says Glen.
Workers at Parker Plumbing say the call for service is so long, it could be two weeks before they get to everyone with broken pipes.