Petersburg fixes sewage backup that spilled over into man’s yard

Resolution for man with yard sewage backup

PETERSBURG, VA (WWBT) - A Petersburg man, who has been at odds with the city since last December over a nasty sewage backup, no longer has to worry about it spilling into his yard.

Ron Bassett had to create a makeshift trench to keep raw sewage from spewing all over his yard. He says the Petersburg Department of Utilities finally came out and installed new underground pipes after months of asking for repairs.

“I was shocked. It was like eight o’clock in the morning and it put a smile on my face. They replaced all the pipes from the middle of the street to the front of my yard. It’s exactly what I wanted. Yes,” Bassett said

The crew showed up early Monday morning, and Bassett said the team worked hard for hours fixing the problem that caused him frustration and embarrassment for many months.

“Before I dug this little trench, everything would come out and be all over my house and go under my porch make it to the sidewalk. So, I dug this little trench so that everything that comes out flushed down and that little circle,” Bassett said.

He also improvised by running a pipe out his back window to release waste water from the washing machine into the yard instead of having it backup in the house.

The Health Department also got involved speeding up the process that had dragged on for months.

“They said that I couldn’t have the pipe hanging out the window and it had been a violation and the raw sewage in the yard, somebody has to come out to fix it,” Bassett said.

While Bassett believes the problem was caused by a faulty city pipe, Petersburg hasn’t stated a cause except to say they will charge him roughly $2,400 to connect his private sewage line to the city’s line.

“I have to get somebody to come out and dig in my yard and replace the pipe that the city can’t take care of. They can’t come in my yard. I have to hook my pipe up to their pipe and that’s about it. I just want to thank Ms. Walker. I’m so happy I called Channel 12. I knew they were going to help me and get me everything I needed,” Bassett said.

Petersburg has now given Bassett 60 days to pay for his part of the repairs. Originally, it was 30 days - which he says that was part of the problem. He couldn’t afford to pay that amount in such a short period of time.

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