Henrico has plan to fix flooded yard

HENRICO, VA (WWBT) - Henrico has mapped out a plan to fix a drainage leak that dumps water onto a backyard on North Ivy Avenue.

Work starts Thursday, one week after 12 On Your Side showed you the mushy backyard that Bill Rouse can't use anymore.

They're not a hundred percent sure the planned construction will work, but the fact that there is a plan and it's starting Thursday, is all Bill Rouse and his family want to hear.

The county said it's committed to finding the leak and plugging it, even if it means scrapping the latest plan and doing something different if Bill Rouse's backyard doesn't dry out with their first try.

"It's been terrible. Four county people sitting in that corner right there, looking at each other and talking," said Rouse.

The 87-year-old World War II veteran just wants to know from where the water is coming and fix it.

Until now, Bill Rouse said he's only gotten excuses from Henrico.

"One time they told me a tree fell in the storm drain. Then the next time they broke a valve. They had an excuse every time you turn around."

His daughter Paulette hired a soil scientist to search out a solution after striking out with the county.

"He comes out here and it being mushy, he loses his balance and he hurts himself. Of course the damage it could cause to the foundation," said Paulette.

The soil expert believes the drainage problem surfaced when the county did sewer work near two houses one street over. Rouse has been dealing with the run off since December.

"It's a pretty bad thing. It's building up and it's actually building up against the footing of the house. The owner has dug him a small, shallow ditch that takes it out to the road," said soil scientist John Harper.

"You can see water on the surface flowing right now. In the backs of these yards, it's under ground, by the time it gets to here, it comes above ground."

Henrico said Wednesday they should get the ok to dig from Miss Utility, and weather permitting, at 8 a.m. Thursday contractors will excavate around the sewer systems at three different addresses on North Juniper Avenue not far from Bill's home to see if somehow those systems are funneling water that makes Bill's backyard unusable.

"This really put a hurting on me," said Rouse.

Bill and his family will get to see what's going on. Henrico said the contractor will do everything in their presence, including observing the ground water level, and restoring the area that's disturbed.

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