Residents in Oxford have criticised Thames Water after their road was blighted by sewer flooding after the recent spate of wet weather.
Residents in around 20 homes in South Hinksey, Earl Street and Western Road saw sewer flooding last week due to the heavy rainfall. They claim that Thames Water is not doing enough to maintain their sewer system.
Thames Water, the London sewer company, has responded with the claim that there have not been any maintenance failures and that it was the sheer volume of water over the weekend in question, as well as the very wet summer, which caused the problems.
Last Tuesday a retired couple found that their living room was ankle-deep in contaminated water. The property owner Mrs Dennehy said in the Oxford Mail:
“Two years ago we spent thousands doing up our kitchen after the last flood, but it’s all happened again.”
Mr Dennehy commented that the family had lived in the home since 1949 but it was only in the last ten years that they have seen sewer flooding. His son, John Dennehy said:
“It shouldn’t have happened, we’ve had the Environment Agency and fire teams out here and they are saying it is a Thames Water issue.”
Thames water spokesperson Simon Evans sympathised with residents, he said:
“We sympathise with those affected, but the sheer amount of rainfall is the fault here, not the system. If it is enough to overwhelm the Thames, it is enough to overwhelm our sewers.”
“We sent our tankers down there to help these people out, not because we were at fault.
“The recent rain was preceded by the wettest summer on record, which has left the ground like a soaked sponge as we go into winter, making flooding more likely.”