Frozen street leaves elderly stranded

DETROIT (WXYZ) - For people living along Parkside on Detroit's west side, there's been no escaping the cold and the ice for over a week.

A broken water pipe in a vacant house iced over the street, meals on wheels couldn't deliver to senior citizens, and loved ones feared the worst.

"My mother, she's 96 and has dementia," said neighbor Stephanie Purvis. "So I don't know if anything were to  happen with her nobody would be able to come in here or I wouldn't have been able to get out."

"We've been calling everyday for three weeks. They come throw salt down," said neighbor Lenora Miller. "I'm like the salt isn't doing any good because the water is still coming.  If you don't fix the problem it's not going to help."

Unable to get the help they needed, neighbors called 7 Action News today and we made a few calls of our own.

In just a few hours, heavy equipment from the water department was on the block breaking up about a foot of ice.  Another crew took care of the broken pipe.

While the city went to work, residents also got a hand from D & R Property Maintenance. They volunteered to put extra salt down to keep the street safe.

"I think it's a great opportunity give back to the community," said Luis Toledo, manager of D & R Property Maintenance.

 "I'm glad somebody responded," said neighbor Willie Frank Norman. "I've called and called… I just got tired to be honest with you."

The vacant home on Parkside had running water and when the temperature got really cold the water pipe burst. 

The water department is working on more effective ways for residents to communicate with the department including an app. 

The department's emergency phone number is (313) 267-7401.

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