Neighbors desperate for help with sewage leak

September 28, 2011 4:25:16 PM PDT
Eyewitness News gets results. A northwest Harris County community dealing with raw sewage in the streets for months finally gets some response.

Neighbors in the 5400 block of Evergreen Canyon say the sewage leak problem coming from a yard on the block is bad and smells horrible. After we made a few calls, it appears the concerns from these neighbors are apparently being addressed by county inspectors.

Neighbors on Evergreen Canyon say the yucky problem they've been dealing with is coming from one yard. That problem -- a serious smelly sewage leak.

Palemon Ortiz lives next door. He says human waste has been spilling from this yard and onto neighboring properties for about three months.

Neighbor Estella Tovars said, "The smell is bad and everything."

Tovars is also fed up with the toxic mess that neighbors say at times flows into the streets by the gallons.

"It was nasty," Tovars recalled. "It was, like, black. It was smelling and everything."

Families here say they're concerned the raw sewage is a serious health and safety hazard. They say the sewage problem is so bad, they've had to move their children's school bus stop from its regular spot to a new location farther down the street, just for their kids' safety.

Several neighbors told me they've tried complaining to the person who lives at the house and to the city without success.

Tovars said, "I'll call, like the city, they just give me a whole bunch of numbers to call."

But I checked and learned that neighbors here may have been complaining to the wrong agencies. We checked with Harris County Public Health and Environmental Services. A spokeswoman said it had no reports about this neighborhood nuisance on Evergreen Canyon. However, after our call on Wednesday, Environmental Public Health opened an investigation and sent an inspector to the neighborhood to check things out.

"I just want to get it fixed," Tovars said.

On Wednesday afternoon the inspector did leave a violation notice on the door. The health department says the homeowner has 24 hours to correct the problem.

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