Continued sewage backups have Portsmouth residents concerned about their health


PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — Once you use the bathroom and flush the toilet you assume you’ll never have to see your waste again.

Unfortunately for some residents in Portsmouth, that does not seem to be the case. One man said sewage is backing up at his County Street home.

“We gotta take our shoes off at the back door and I gotta clean my shoes off, so that I don’t track, you know, feces throughout the entire house,” said Jonathan Walker.

Walker says when this sanitation sewer line backs up, his whole driveway that he shares with three other residents becomes a lake for human waste.

“Something is hitting on their side and it comes up and there is literal feces and toilet paper and it just smells terrible,” Walker said. “We’re trudging nasty water inside of our house, they charge us monthly for sanitation maintenance, and it doesn’t seem like they’re doing any maintenance.”

Their latest call for help was answered. Public utilities came out to flush the lateral pipe with water then vacuumed it with a vacuum truck, but Jonathan said this is only temporary.

“No matter what they do, they come out here they push some water through and yeah, not even a day later, 10 minutes later, it’s backing up again,” Walker said.

He says it’s not just a problem outside of his home

“It filled up my tub, you know with poo on my side, it filled up with dirty water and I had to clean it out myself,” added Walker.

“I could get sick behind that, you know we could all get sick behind that.”

He says frustration doesn’t begin to describe how he feels.

“Everybody here pays taxes and pays their water bill, it’s not right that we, you know, we live in a city where we gotta walk in poo to get in and out of our cars,” he said.

10 On Your Side did get a hold of public utilities. They say they are not sure why there is a blockage, but they now realize there is an issue and are scheduling a time for this week to give a high tech closer look inside the tank to find the problem.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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