Heavy rain forces sewage into basements

LANSING, MI (WLNS) – Flooded roads weren’t the only problem from the rain.

As our Christa Lamendola found out some in West Lansing came home to their basements filled with more than one foot of sewage.

“The smell and you could see different particles on the floor,” said Johnny and Melody Sorrells, basement flooded.

Two sump pumps couldn’t stop sewage from covering every inch of the basement of the Sorrells family.

“It was running out of here. It was coming out of this drain. Three to four inches of water in the basement and sewage was in the basement.”

As it turns out, the Sorrells were not alone.

“Oh, I was so grossed out, it was worse than smelling an outhouse,” said Chico Garza and Molly Eastman, basement flooded.

The majority of their neighbors also had sewage pushing in from the storm drain on the street.

“We’re aware of those but that was because of the volume of water not because the drain didn’t work,” said Pat Lindemann, drain commissioner, Ingham County.

But the homeowners say sewage overflow from heavy rainfall is an ongoing problem and want to see something done

“That’s the issue they’re totally out of our control I’m surprised we got through to somebody but they don’t have really a good answer,” said Chico Garza and Molly Eastman, basement flooded.

It’s a mess that has many of the homeowners asking, what should they do? And while they search for those answers many say the only thing they can do is clean up.

“We’ve got the bleach ready to go,” said Chico Garza and Molly Eastman, basement flooded.

“Probably get a dumpster and throw away stuff that we can’t save or salvage,” said Johnny and Melody Sorrells, basement flooded.

But homeowners say with preventative plumping and professional cleanup, this sewage spit up could cost thousands

The Ingham County Drain Commissioner says they have crews out assessing the damages from the sewer overflows across the area and are hoping to identify any problems and fix them as soon as possible.

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