Ipswich: Residents kick up a stink over floods of sewage

IPSWICH: There was a paddling pool of sewage in our kitchen.

Those are the words of new mum Sarah Lanni, who is terrified that yet another deluge of untreated waste into the kitchen and living room of her family home could leave her seven-week-old baby boy exposed to all kinds of diseases.

Sarah and husband Tony are just one couple in a row of five houses in Daimler Road which are regularly flooded with putrid fluid from a nearby drain – costing them thousands of pounds in repairs, higher insurance premiums and devaluation of their house prices.

And they have now enlisted North Ipswich MP Dr Dan Poulter to help them in the fight to end their misery.

Mrs Lanni, 28, said: “Last time it flooded, in September, I was heavily pregnant and I shouldn’t have had to clear up raw sewage. But Tony was inches deep in it.

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“And when Luca’s a toddler crawling around on the floor, it’ll be even more worrying.

“It’s not hygienic for a start – my son would get ill if he was crawling on the floor – and the effort of having to clear it up every time is just too much.

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“It definitely makes us want to move because you don’t want to have to worry every year and every time it rains that you’re going to have sewage all over the house.”

Residents have also been forced to clear up women’s sanitary items from their front gardens.

The waste flows in from the street any time very heavy rainfall forces up a nearby manhole cover, leaving the houses to bear the brunt of the problem because they are at a slightly lower level than their neighbours.

The filthy water has even bubbled back up through the pipes and into kitchen and bathroom sinks, as well as leaking through the inflow pipe of the washing machine, leaving their houses with a disgusting smell which is impossible to clear.

Dr Poulter, who visited the residents on Saturday to see the extent of the problem, said: “People buy homes in good faith and they should expect that they would have good drainage.

“Anglia did put some measures in place, but they weren’t adequate, so it’s now about getting them to accept responsibility for that. People have paid a lot for their houses and they deserve better than that.

“They should be responsible for ensuring the mains water supply is in good order – I don’t think that’s asking too much.”

Resident Graham Simpson, 56, was refused when he tried to renew his insurance in August this year because of the number of flooding complaints, while others have seen premiums becoming two or three times dearer.

A spokesman for the water company said: “Anglian Water is aware of the ongoing problems in Daimler Road.

“We are working closely with the county and district councils to find a solution as quickly as possible.”

n Are you affected by sewage problems? Write to Your Letters, The Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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