Residents forced to take smelly problem into their own hands - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Blair Simmons

Residents forced to take smelly problem into their own hands

It's a smelly issue without a simple solution.

Nick Bingham, a resident of the Cropton Place Condominiums in Memphis, said Saturday that whenever a sizable amount of rain falls at his complex, raw sewage floods the parking lot.

"It had a foul odor," he said of a recent incident. "You can go and talk to anyone here, and they can tell you about the smell."

"It's raw sewage," neighbor Mike Morgan added. "It's people's bathrooms backed up out here."

According to Bingham, finding someone to fix the problem was a nightmare.

Bringham first called MLGW, where an official told him the utility does not handle such matters.  MLGW directed him to the Memphis sewer department, who also said they could not help him.

Bingham said an official at the city's sewer department told him since the sewer line was on private property, they could not fix the problem.

Finally Bingham, with seemlingly no other alternative, got so fed up with smelling and wading in sewage that he called a private plumbing company to fix the problem.  After he and other neighbors paid to get the problem fixed with their own money, Bingham said he felt like he paid twice for something the city should have taken care of.

"I figured, it's a city sewer line," he said. "It's not a private septic system here.  We're tied onto the city sewer, and pay our taxes just like everyone else does. Whether or not manhole and lines are on private property shouldn't make a difference."

When contacted by Action News 5, a MLGW spokesperson repeated that the utility does not handle sewage problems, and referred our call to the city's sewage department.  At the time this article was posted, no one there had returned our calls.


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