NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Friday’s rain left some families in Queens sleepless as they rushed to clean more raw sewage coming into their basements.
Neighbors tell CBS2’s Christina Fan every time it rains, water from a nearby sewer line backs into their home and the city is doing nothing about it.
Xiu Young couldn’t save her basement from another flooding disaster Friday night. She says every time it rains, raw sewage permeates through her home.
“Of course I’m angry, this is all the city’s fault. We’ve complained to them many years and they don’t care,” Young said.
Just this month, Young says she had to pump water out of her basement four times. She says the city’s sewer line on 231st Street is causing the problem and her calls to 311 have gone nowhere.
“When they come, they say it’s our own fault, we clogged the pipe so that’s why the water seeps.”
“The water gets backed up, and it gets backed up into our houses because of the elevation and the way this wasn’t installed properly and the problem is this causes a lot of health hazards,” another Queens resident said.
Last month, hundreds of residents in South Ozone Park had their homes flooded by more sewage after a 42-inch pipe broke.
City authorities have claimed that people pouring an abundance of grease down drains during Thanksgiving may have been to blame for that incident.
Bellerose Manor families say the problem has been going on for years, almost always after a heavy downpour.
One homeowner says he loses sleep every time it’s going to rain. It’s why he installed an alarm.
“Even to take a shower and go to the bathroom we try to avoid when it’s raining,” Wat Puntoompoti said.
Neighbors say they’ve accumulated tens of thousands of dollars-worth of damage. The sewage has ruined floor tiles, carpets, and their walls. They say the department of environmental protection never comes out until after the water recedes.
When CBS2 asked the Department of Environmental Protection for a response, they said they are looking into the issue. CBS2’s Christina Fan saw one crew in the Bellerose Manor neighborhood investigating earlier Saturday night.