Brookside residents deal with sewage backups - KCTV5

Brookside residents deal with sewage backups

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(Image credit: Kelsey Ryan) (Image credit: Kelsey Ryan)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

While businesses in Waldo were dealing with floodwaters, people in Brookside had another issue afoot: sewage creeping into their basements.

It’s a mess that no one wants to wake up to, but some saw as much as a foot of sewage in their basements.

People in the neighborhood say the sewers’ structure is the source of the problem.

Since the sewers there deal with sewage and storm water, when things get backed up, they’re left cleaning up the mess.

“We just slept through the night, so there was no idea what was happening until this morning,” Dylan Lowder said. “When I came and looked down, the water was about to that step and I knew exactly what had happened.”

“There wasn't a single spot that was dry,” he said. “All the boxes that you see, the Yeti cooler was actually floating.”

Much of their morning was spent cleaning up the basement, scrambling to ensure things would also be properly sanitized.

“The sump pump, sometime during the night I think, just couldn't keep up and it actually burned up,” Lowder said. “So once that happened, that let all the water just keep coming in. And it was about, almost to my knees deep. So maybe like 15 inches, 16 inches or so of sewage.”

After the sump pump failed, he borrowed an industrial pump from a neighbor while he picked up another one at Home Depot.

They have lived on their street for six years and said this isn’t the first time this has happened.

The Lowders weren’t alone in their sewage struggle.

Just up the street, another family had brought in help to get things cleaned up after their basement also got backed up.

The cleanup isn’t something completely out of the ordinary to the area according to contractors. “The drains, the storm drains and the sewer drains, are just not capable of handling 7 inches of rain in a matter of a few hours,” said David Allen with Elite Handyman. “It just won't work.”

“In Brookside, because it's so old, they put the storm sewers and the waste sewers together,” he explained. “So when it floods, instead of just having water, you have human waste everywhere.”

Unfortunately, there isn’t much else that families in the area can do besides try to get it cleaned up.

Allen suggests that families invest in a sump pump as well as a backup battery in case they also lose power.

Allen said that, if you’re cleaning up something like this yourself, you want to make sure you also sanitize everything. That means that, after cleaning, use a bleach and water mixture, or something similar to hit all surfaces.

As the cleanup continues, Lowder is keeping a positive outlook. He said, “That's part of Kansas City and Brookside, you know? It comes with the turf, I guess.”

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