BAY SHORE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — The storm is over, but there’s a new problem in the air for Long Island residents.
“The stink and the stench is unbelievable,” Bay Shore resident Laurie Serrano said.
As CBS 2’s Lou Young reported, the flooding, which contained sewage, drove residents of Homan Avenue off the block for a day and a half. Some residents aren’t so happy to be back.
“It stinks. I mean, you can smell it!” resident Debbie Poe said.
Even after a clean-up effort, Young reported spill-brown sludge and what looks like bathroom waste could be seen caught in the grass.
The county says it is a low-lying part of its system and if the storms come again in that volume, it could happen again.
“There’s not much you can do without putting bigger pipes in which is not really feasible,” John Donovan with the Suffolk County Department of Public Works said.
The pipe that was overwhelmed Wednesday, which is 8 feet in diameter, feeds the Bergen sewage treatment plant five miles away in West Babylon, Young reported.
The same big pipes backed up in 2010 and 2005 and Donovan says the changing weather is to blame.
“We’re seeing storms that we typically shouldn’t be seeing except for once in a hundred years,” Donovan said.
But Serrano is still upset.
“It’s unacceptable to have my house surrounded with raw sewage. I do not live in a third world country!” she said.
The sewage treatment plant in question is designed to handle 60 million gallons a day.
On the day of the deluge and back-up, CBS 2 reported it was hit with 100 million gallons.
The Suffolk County Department of Public Works says it is already upgrading pumping stations after Superstorm Sandy. But it says there is nothing it can do to the system to enable it to absorb the kind of rain the area saw this week.
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