LINDENHURST, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – Homeowners on Long Island say they are frustrated with chronic street flooding.
Near the Great South Bay, streets can go from bone dry to being under two feet of water within minutes.
Now, those homeowners are planning to sue.
Robert and Faye Anastasio and a dozen other families in Lindenhurst are uniting for a possible class action lawsuit against the south shore village they love.
“Yes we are all contemplating taking legal action,” the couple told CBS2’s Jennifer McLogan. “Because nothing’s being done.”
Daily life in Lindenhurst continues to be a tug of war with water woes. High tides, full moon, and winds all wreaking havoc on local properties.
Residents say they are tired of having to wait for a fix. Flooding has now gone from inches to feet on a regular basis.
“I’ve got hip boots from an uncle of mine who was a fireman… and I have to wear them this high to get up and down the block,” homeowner John Bucalo said.
“We are doing every possible thing we can within our means it’s a costly operation trying new methods,” DPW commissioner Rick Sorrentino said.
Check valves and back flow prevention devices – designed to allow water to flow out but not back into streets – reportedly only work some of the time.
Lindenhurst is now considering electric pumps. It’s something already successful in nearby Freeport according to Mayor Robert Kennedy.
“We’ve put in pumps into these catch basins so that in the event of high tide and rain water collecting in the streets,” Mayor Kennedy explained.
“The pumps will bypass the check valves and pump the water back into the bay.”
There are health and safety issues as well.
“I have a cane. It’s very hard to navigate,” one resident said.
“Long term is put in flood gates,” Sorrentino answered when asked about a solution to the possible lawsuit.
“Surge barrier gates. Very similar to what they have up in New Bedford, Massachusetts. Put them in 48 years ago. Haven’t flooded since.”
South shore mayors are meeting with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to determine if it’s feasible to build flood gates at Jones and Fire Island inlets.