Three-year long sewage issue down the drain

Sewage fills a Newlands Road resident's pool after a repeated leak. Photo: Supplied

A Newlands Road resident who had a repeated sewage leak that filled her pool with human waste has possibly seen the end of her waste woes.

Resident, Chantel Britz, approached the Northcliff Melville Times in early November last year at her wit’s end after a three-year sewage problem.

The problem became so bad that it started spilling into her property’s pool – and that was in summer.

During a telephonic interview with Northcliff Melville Times, she explained that they stopped filling the pool because of the sewage running into it, and although it was unhealthy, it prevented it from spilling into the house from the backyard.


Sewage water fills a Newlands Road resident’s garden after a repeated sewage leak. Photo: Supplied

While Johannesburg Water regularly unblocked the drain, Britz naturally wanted a permanent solution. After an initial report by the Northcliff Melville Times last year, Johannesburg Water sent a camera inspection team to ascertain what the exact problem was. According to Britz, the team found a blockage of some sort in the main sewerage line in the street and subsequently scraped the problem pipe.

Britz said since the scraping of the pipe, she has had no further sewage problems, however, her pool is still filled with it from the repeated leaks, of which the last was in October.

“The smell is horrible and we now have a bat problem. The way I understand it, bats relocate to dam areas where there’s sewage,” she said.

Britz has two children aged nine and 12 as well as two small dogs. She said besides not having access to their pool during the scorching summer temperatures over the festive season, she has had to restrict what was the previous play area.

She further explained that her dogs now have to live in the garage and she only sometimes lets them in the yard, which she fears is a health risk to them.

Johannesburg Water spokesperson, Isaac Dhludhlu, confirmed that the issue was resolved and said that the entity always appreciates when customers bring problems to their attention.

“Joburg Water is committed to helping out, especially if a customer has incurred costs we feel were unnecessary. We are also committed to following processes to recoup monies lost by these residents,” Dhludhlu said.

Britz has since submitted quotes to the entity’s finance department which Dhludlhu confirmed and said the department will forward the quotes to the Johannesburg Water insurance team for validation and processing.

“She has an option of paying the service provider for the repairs and send the invoices to our insurance or [she] can wait for the insurance to pay the service provider directly,” he explained.

ALSO READ: Swimming in sewage 

Roxy de Villiers

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