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Waterloo residents angry after basements fill with filth

June 30, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

WATERLOO – Waterloo residents are demanding compensation after heavy rains and tinkering with the sewer system flooded their basements with sewage twice in June.

I do not want to go through this again,” said Janice Judisch. One woman said the backup killed the pending sale of her home.

Another resident is relocating and worries the damage will hurt attempts to sell his home. David Stoner said his son awoke on a basement couch surrounded by water with his plugged-in xBox gaming console floating nearby. “Had he slept 15-20 more minutes, he might be dead right now,” Stoner said.

He could have lost his life. ”His son was able to make his way upstairs without harm. Residents hit by the backup have filed claims with the city, but as of Monday the total number wasn’t known. City officials said the problem is likely the result of work to uncouple sanitary sewer lines from storm sewer lines, as was mandated by a 2016 U. S. Department of Justice consent decree.

Connections between the two systems were found in the Home Park area and were closed off in September. In the wake of the basement backups, the city has received approval from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources to reconnect the lines in hopes of handling any future overflows until a permanent fix can be built.

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