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Discuss Water surge up through toilet after water company did routine street cleanse in the Plumbing Forum area at UKPlumbersForums.co.uk.

  1. Bewildered 57

    Bewildered 57 New Member

    SevernTrent's subcontractor carried out a routine drains cleanse at the bottom of the street about 20 houses away. We were in our house and heard lots of noises coming up the pipes. Water then poured out of the 1st floor toilet flooding the floor. It stopped after a few minutes. While my husband was cleaning up I spotted the subcontractor lorry at the bottom of the street. They said they were doing routine cleanses of the drains in the area. They say they would put a note on the system that that area should only be done with low pressure. But we think this happened as well last year when we were away and came back to our downstairs toilet wet and the floorboards warped. They say there is nothing we can do about it but is there something we can fix to the two waste pipes for the downstairs and upstairs toilet ? We're pensioners and I'm really anxious about preventing this. There was a rancid smell upstairs although the water looked clear. It's an old Victorian property and the neighbours next door have a new build and didn't have any water come in although we have a shared drain with them. Many thanks for any advice. We're happy to get a plumber out but want to check as we saw something online called a anti backflow valve.
     
  2. snowhead

    snowhead Well-Known Member

    Ring Severn Trent, you shouldn't have to do anything to overcome a problem they or their contractors have caused.

    They should arrange and pay for a clean up in your house.
     
    • Agree Agree x 4
  3. Chuck

    Chuck Well-Known Member

    My guess is that there is a partially blocked or undersized section of sewer owned by Severn Trent downstream from your house. The contractor must have emptied a load of water in upstream and it flooded out at the lowest opening, i.e. your downstairs loo.

    In my opinion, this is not a problem with drains you are responsible for. Also, I've never heard of a water company carrying out two 'routine clenses of drains' within a year. A cynic might think that they know there's a problem in the area and are trying to delay having to fix it properly.

    Take photos of any damage and complain to Severn Trent. Be persistent and good luck!
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  4. Bewildered 57

    Bewildered 57 New Member

    Thank you Snowhead and Chuck. I'm getting passed between the contractor and Severn Trent just now. I'll get in contact with them to try to force them to investigate using what Chuck has told me.
     
  5. snowhead

    snowhead Well-Known Member

    Ignore the Contractor.
    It's Severn Trent who are responsible, if it is the sub contractors fault then it's S.Trent to sort them out.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
  6. Chuck

    Chuck Well-Known Member

    If I understand the Ofwat rules correctly:

    Standards of service - Ofwat

    you should be in line for a worthwhile refund (a year's sewage charge), in addition to any costs associated with the clean-up and making good of any damage.

    Just to echo Snowhead's advice deal only with Severn Trent. If they try to palm you off to the contractor add that to your complaint and ask to speak to someone more senior.

    You might want to consult the Consumers' Advice Bureau if you need help making your claim(s).

    My advice is that if you don't get an immediate very positive response to a phone call, switch to dealing with your complaint in writing and get proof of delivery of the first letter. Some large companies are experts at wasting the time of telephone complainants as part of a strategy intended to make sure that a large proportion of complainants give up in frustration without ever actually registering a valid 'official complaint'.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  7. Bewildered 57

    Bewildered 57 New Member

    Thank you very much Chuck. We're both under the weather with flu but will pursue this as soon as one of us feels better.
     
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