LOCAL NEWS

Highland Homeowners Swamped By Sewer Backup Related To Road Reconstruction

Sep 26, 2018, 10:21 PM | Updated: 10:24 pm

HIGHLAND, Utah – Juliawna Killpack was getting ready for the day when an unpleasant scent reached her in the main floor bathroom.

“I came to the top of the stairs and all of a sudden there was just this overwhelming sewer smell,” Killpack recalled. “Curiosity took me down, got to the little landing on my stairs, looked down and the whole family room was just swamped with sewer — solid sewer, soupy sewer, it just was all over.”

It was a scene out of a horror film, the Highland homeowner said as she replayed in vivid detail the moment she discovered the sewer had backed up in her basement.

“(I) pushed the door open and then this flood of sewer water and sewage material — just really awful — came flooding out almost to the top of my boots,” Killpack said. “The toilet was just a geyser and the tub was completely filled with sewer.”

On Wednesday, Highland City said seven homes, including Killpack’s, were affected by the backup that started Monday.

“We are reconstructing 6000 West, which is a major street in Highland, and unfortunately the contractor made an error which caused a sewer blockage,” said assistant city administrator Erin Wells. “A piece of equipment got down into where there was a blockage in the line, so our crews had to go in and remove the blockage so the sewer can flow again.”

Wells said the contractor had taken responsibility for what happened.

“They are working with their insurance company so that they will be paying for the restoration needed to our residents’ homes,” Wells said.

Killpack said her basement contained multiple electronics systems and furniture and other items that carried sentimental value.

“Stick horse right there — I made those for my boys when they were just little, and to find that flopped over in the muck is kind of disappointing,” Killpack said. “There’s no value on that except the memory value.”

Killpack and other homeowners said Wednesday afternoon they feared they somehow wouldn’t be made whole out of the ordeal, or perhaps they might be compensated for less than the full value of the repair and replacement costs.

They said, however, they continued to work with the city and were hopeful the situation would be resolved.

Even at that, Killpack acknowledged several items could not be adequately replaced.

“It’s just a mess,” Killpack said. “It’s a health hazard, it’s smelly, it’s gone.”

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Highland Homeowners Swamped By Sewer Backup Related To Road Reconstruction