Some residents are still looking for answers after their homes were damaged from recent sewage backups.
Shoreham Lane is a small cul de sac on Norwich Road, a private road off of paralleling Regent Parkway. Homes there are part of the Chadwyck subdivision near Regent Park. Earlier this summer, sewage backed up into three homes on Shoreham, causing extensive damage.
“Each of our homes now has from $35,000 to $40,000 in damage,” said resident Danielle Chambers. “The county has denied the claims, stating that they are not at fault but has given no explanation as to why.”
Chambers said she and neighbors are looking into legal action to determine who should pay for repairs.
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“The engineer’s report that the county gave us showed that the flood was caused by years of build-up in the sewer lines,” she said. “They never offered any help, advice on cleaning up the hazardous material from the homes or told us that we should not be staying at the house exposing ourselves the hazardous waste.”
The county offers little information on the ongoing issue. It is being evaluated, officials said.
“This claim was turned over to the Insurance Reserve Fund,” said Trish Startup, county spokesperson. “IRF is the insurance group that covers the county and evaluates claims.”
The backups into homes aren’t listed as public wastewater spills. State records show only nine spills this year in York County, just two in the Fort Mill area. A manhole spit up an estimated 1,000 gallons behind the River Crossing business park in March. In late July, about 50 gallons spilled when a vehicle crashed at a treatment facility at Sidney Johnson and Jackson streets.
Chambers said water was a concern even before the sewer backups.
“Another neighbor, not involved in the flood, had an independent testing done of the water that showed positive for coliform,” she said. “Now we are concerned about our drinking water as well.”
York County sent water samples from two Norwich Drive homes to a Kershaw lab for testing. Coliform is a bacteria associated with feces.
“The results were absent of total coliform for both samples taken,” Startup said.
The samples did show free chlorine levels “well above” the state guideline, close to twice the threshold amount.
“Public works will notify both residents of the results and reassure them that the county is committed to providing clean and safe drinking water,” Startup said when the results were released.
“The county will additionally request the laboratory samples report obtained by the citizen to help identify any discrepancies.”
Further testing, as required by the state, will continue.
“The county will continue monthly sampling and take appropriate action when necessary,” Startup said.
Catawba Riverkeeper Sam Perkins, whose group tests water and evaluate tests mainly related to surface water, reviewed the lab results for residents. The absence of coliform — an indicator poor water quality found, among other places, in untreated wastewater — is a good sign, Perkins said.
The chlorine levels aren’t dramatically high either, he said.
“Chlorine looks similar to what might be in treated drinking water,” Perkins said.