George Hawkins, Washington, D.C. Water's general manager searching for answers in repeated flooding area

10:47 PM, Jul 20, 2012   |    comments
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NORTHWEST, D.C. (WUSA) -- The Bloomingdale area traditionally floods every few years. 

But residents say they've never had to deal with three floods in a week's time.  And it's not just water but raw sewage that gushes into their basements.

The DC Water and Sewer Authority was out here trying to figure out why this is happening.

On Friday, crews walked the underground pipes. They cleaned out storm drains and snaked cameras where crews can't get to.

But they haven't found any clogged pipes.
George Hawkins is DC Water's General Manager. "It seems something's changed. We've looked everywhere and haven't found anything."

The frustration is bubbling over for Bloomingdale residents, seeing images of high water coming out of storm drains, their toilets and tubs.

They've cleaned out sewage from their basements for the 3rd time in eight days.

Some residents have temporary fixes with stop valves.  DC Water suggests installing a backflow preventer at the cost of roughly 2500 dollars. The agency is working on a plan to help pay for part of it.

The permanent solution is still 13 years away.  DC Water is building 22 foot in diameter pipes, the size of a Metro tunnel to replace the 7 foot diameter pipes.

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