P.G. County residents scramble to stock up on water

It’s time to fill up – and we’re not talking about the gas pump.

The 54-inch concrete pipe that is replacing the current one with crumbling wires must be in place as soon as possible to carry water to hundreds of thousands of P.G. County residents. 150,000 of those residents are now under mandatory water restrictions as of Tuesday at 9 p.m. And if they haven’t amassed an arsenal of tap water by now, it is too late.

Berdia Monk and her father Randy braced themselves for Tuesday night’s mandatory water restrictions in Prince George’s County. And those not filling up were trying to buy water as quickly as possible. A Giant in Temple Hills even ran out.

David Gross got lucky at the CVS: “There were three left. I grabbed two, and the gentleman behind me grabbed the last one.”

The WSSC urged the tens of thousands of customers who will be affected to stock up on water. As of 9 p.m. Tuesday, no unnecessary water use is allowed – no watering lawns or washing cars, and residents must minimize flushing toilets.

Resident Tawanna Price is definitely prepped -- she has a bucket ready to dip the water out of her tub.

“It's filled up,” she said. “We filled it up this morning before we left for work."

Monique Williams, a D.C. resident, even delivered water to her sister's family. "It's crazy, it's crazy," she said. "I just want to make sure that they will be hydrated, be able to take baths, and brush their teeth -- you know, personal hygiene stuff."

The best case scenario is that the water will be back on within five days. However, it is going to be a brutal five days with the heat wave hammering in our area. So, emergency officials plan to open receptions centers for people to have access to basic necessities – showers, toilets, water. After all, these are basics that could be luxuries in just a matter of hours.

P.G. County executive Rushern Baker said: "Come tomorrow morn when everybody wakes up and takes a shower, we are going to run out of water fast. As soon as that pipe is taken out, that's going to be something.”

Fortunately, the power is still on; but for many, the prospect of no water is absolutely no fun.