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Monday, November 7, 2011

Sewage Flooding Troubling for Elderly Woman

ELDERLY residents have been left ankle deep in sewage floodwater at their sheltered bungalows in Longridge.

90-year-old Alice Bolton and her neighbours have suffered years of problems at their homes on Windsor Avenue, with overflowing drains spewing filthy water into their bathrooms and bedrooms.

And despite complaints to Lancashire County Council and landlords Ribble Valley Housing and numerous attempts to solve the situation, with ditches cleaned and new pipes installed, the floods continued to cause misery.

Recent downpours have brought added anxiety as residents braced themselves for more floods - and Alice says no-one seemed to want to take responsibility.

“They made some repairs, but blamed floods from the school field and just seemed to be passing the buck all the time - they didn’t want to know,” said Mrs Bolton.

Now, however, there is fresh hope for Alice and her neighbours.

Water giant United Utilities have recently taken charge of sewer pipes following new government legislation and a spokesperson told The News this week that they should be able to help.

The spokesperson said: “The new government rules have recently come into force which have given UK water companies responsibility for some sewer pipes previously held under private ownership.

“The sewer pipes serving the sheltered accommodation at Windsor Avenue are covered by the new legislation, which means we now have the authority to repair them, if required.

“We aim to carry out a CCTV survey of the pipes in the next couple of weeks, to see what state they are in, and to determine if there are any obstructions underground. If repairs are required, we will put an action plan together.

“We hope we are able to solve what appears to have been a long-running issue for residents.”

The news was greeted with relief and thanks by Alice Bolton, currently fighting a cold due to the damp. She says she has suffered flooding problems for the past eight of the 19 years she has lived at Windsor Avenue.

She has had to face sewage gushing up into her shower when she was using it - her son had to dig a hole to bury the waste - and damp affects her back bedroom with seepage from the garden when it floods.

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