Sewage nightmare plagues harbour residents

HOME owners at Rye Harbour have had their gardens flooded with raw sewage.

A continuing problem of burst pipes from a nearby sewage plant is making life a nightmare for residents at Tram Road and Oyster Creek who say the smell is intolerable.

Theresa Sutton, of Oyster Creek, said: “We have had to live with this on and off for four years now and they keep fobbing us off.

“There are young children living here, I have grandchildren myself, and we are concerned that this is a health hazard. This should not be happening in this day and age.

“I had a meeting in my garden with managers from Southern Water back in May and they said they intended to do something but nothing has changed.

“They are effectively saying that we have to live with it.

“Leaks happen every few months. Something has to be done, we cannot go on living like this.”

Nicola Musselwhite, from Tram Road, said: “The smell seems to be worse every time I use my washing machine. It is awful, the whole house fills with it. I have young children and I am worried.”

Maria Harrison, from Southern Water, said: “We would like to apologise to customers for the problems caused by a damaged sewer main located at Oyster Creek, Rye Harbour.

“The problems experienced were caused by a burst on the pumping sewer main. As soon as we became aware we switched off the pumping station and tankered flows until repairs were effected.

“There is also a scheme in our capital programme for renewal of the rising main and it is currently planned to carry the work out this financial year. We are unable to provide a more precise time-scale for the commencement of the works at this stage.

“Regarding odours, these emanate from our pumping station and is due to salty groundwater entering the sewers and drains which can unfortunately cause sewage to become septic.

“A cover was installed on the pumping station wet well earlier this year. We have also offered the affected resident a Windsor trap on her drains which is a device that helps prevent odour from travelling along them. Unfortunately, although this offer was made earlier this year, the resident concerned has only recently agreed to allow us to carry out this work.”