Residents of OC condo complex forced to live without natural gas for 3 weeks

David González Image
Saturday, June 24, 2023
Residents of OC complex forced to live without natural gas for 3 weeks
No hot water, no gas for cooking and no patience. For nearly a month, hundreds of residents living in a condo complex in Orange have been forced to live without natural gas.

ORANGE, Calif. (KABC) -- Residents of La Veta Monterey Condominiums in Orange are fed up after living without natural gas for the last three weeks.

Jisela Hernandez has lived on the property for the last four years. She said she hasn't had hot food or hot water to bathe in.

SoCalGas detected gas leaks at the complex on June 2 and disconnected the master meter, which services about 200 homes on the property, for safety reasons.

Frank Cate has been a resident of the complex for 19 years.

"It's just very inconvenient," he said. "It's mostly just boils down to cold showers now. If I want a hot shower, I have to go to the gym. If I want hot food, I either have to do takeout or go to someone else's house to actually have the warm food."

The gas company said the leaks are on the customer side of the master meter so property owners and the homeowners association are responsible for fixing and maintaining gas lines after the meter.

"They didn't give us the courtesy of calling us," said Hernandez. "They didn't give us a warning of one or two weeks, letting us know they had an emergency, even the day before."

Homeowners and renters said the HOA is hesitant to do what's needed because it will cost a lot of money.

"To be honest, to call these condominiums when they were originally apartments, they already knew that they had problems," Cate said. "I would say it's the HOA's fault for not really wanting to invest on the property."

Eyewitness News reached out to the HOA board president and vice president for comment but has not hear back.

Some residents feel like they're being kept out of the loop and just want to know when things are going back to normal.

"I just want whoever is responsible to say, 'Hey, here's a roadmap of what needs to be done and if we can get it done, this is how long it's going to take,'" said Cate.

SoCalGas said once repairs are made, it tests the property's lines to ensure it is safe to use and restore service.

It's something that people who live at La Veta Monterey said needs to happen sooner than later.