NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The mercury has dropped into the teens, and the wind chill has made it feel like a mere 5 degrees, and some New York City residents can’t even find relief in their own homes.
As 1010 WINS’ Holli Haerr reported on Wednesday, it’s the kind of weather that anyone would want to avoid, but some residents of a New York City Housing Authority building in the Red Hook East development in Brooklyn have not had that option.
“You either have hot water, not any heat at all, or you have heat where they’re cooking you, and it’s so hot you have to open your windows or put on your air conditioner because you can’t breathe,” said former Community Board member Judith Daly. “So it’s one extreme or the other. Right now, it’s nothing.”
Daly said the problem has persisted for a couple of days now. She said NYCHA representatives have been coming by, but have yet to fix the problem.
“They’re working on it,” she said. “That’s all they tell you – they’re working on it.”
Meanwhile, as CBS 2’s Derricke Dennis reported, it was a double emergency for a four-story building on Ocean Parkway in the Kensington section of Brooklyn. Radiators were cold, and signs were posted warning that there was no heat or water, for more than 24 hours.
“I try to put a warm jacket, blanket on, or put electric heater on,” said tenant Mizanur Rahman.
But there was no relief in sight, and tenants of the building – many of them from Bangladesh – resorted to boiling water on the stovetop, or worse, getting heat from an open flame.
Others had space heaters, temporarily warming just one room.
Otherwise, families with small children would freeze.
“My family two kids, that’s how I’m living right now, because since last night, after 8 o’clock, no heat, no hot water,” said Moha Hashnath, a father.
“My husband, my son, my daughter all are sick” because of the cold, added Mosammad Kazal.
CBS 2 tried calling the landlord, but there was no answer. The same went for frustrated tenants, who identified a locked boiler room where the problem lies.
They said the landlord just doesn’t care.
“We feel disrespected, because he thinks it’s a joke. This is not a joke,” said Claudia Beckford. “People are freezing. This is the coldest day of the year.”
Beckford continued: “Give us a decent answer, or act like you care. These are not animals. We’re paying rent. We’re not here free.”
Residents said they saw the building super going into the boiler room Wednesday night, but relief could still be hours away.
And at 25 Sherman Ave., in Jersey City, residents have been complaining for months about not having heat and hot water.
“My apartment is terrible for this very cold. I have three heaters. It’s terrible,” one resident told 1010 WINS’ Steve Sandberg.
“If it’s not one thing, it’s the other. They cut out the gas then there’s no hot water, if there’s hot water, but then there’s no heater. It’s horrible,” said another tenant.
The city has cited the landlord and is now taking him to court.
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