Liberal Democrats on Kent County Council are calling for action on a health hazard caused by the recent and ongoing flooding across Kent.
In a number of places groundwater has flooded the sewerage system, with very unpleasant results.
Rob Bird, county councillor for Maidstone Central, who lives in Yalding, says: " In recent weeks I have heard of several instances of sewage getting into properties, some of which might otherwise not have flooded, because the main drainage systems failed. Worse still, in Borough Green sewage was discharged from the local processing plant because of a catastrophic power failure.Flood water is nearly always dirty but the presence of raw sewage makes it particularly repugnant and hazardous."
George Koowaree, county councillor for Ashford East, has seen the same thing happening in Kennington Road and Silverhill Road
He says: "Raw sewage is a massive health risk.With its responsibilities for public health KCC has a clear duty to ensure that Southern Water's sewerage systems have adequate resilience so they can cope with even the most extreme conditions."
And Martin Vye, Canterbury councillor , tells of his experiences. "The main sewer along the valley of the Nailbourne, south of Canterbury, has not been fit for purpose for many years. At times of heavy and prolonged rainfall groundwater leaks into the sewer and forces sewage back up into people's homes.Ironically , this winter, after 12 years of campaigning by local people , Southern Water have finally begun re-lining the sewer.But it is not complete, and sewage has had to be pumped into the Nailbourne again.If only they had done the work years ago! "
Rob concludes: " The county council is responsible for checking the work of all agencies to reduce flood risk in Kent, and is also responsible for safeguarding residents' public health.. We are demanding that the council thoroughly investigate the failures of the water companies to safeguard homes and watercourse from sewage , and put maximum pressure on them to make the sewerage system fit for purpose."
Martin adds: " This failure of the sewerage system calls into question the wisdom of adding to the pressures on it by building the thousands of houses in Kent that are projected."
If you have had problems with sewage getting into your property, please send an e-mail telling us of your experiences to
Phone: 01227 831820