Residents fed up with sewage in parking lots

Solid pieces of human waste, toilet paper littered parking lot

By Sophia Beausoleil - Reporter

HOUSTON - A homeowner at Three Fountains Condominiums is fed up with a stinky situation of raw sewage entering the parking lot.

Cassie Wilson bought her condo a year ago. Her complex attaches to Three Fountains Apartments.  The property line for the apartments start across from her parking spot.

Wilson said for several months, most recently in the last two weeks, solid pieces of human waste and toilet paper have littered the parking lot.

"It’s horrible. I live in a corner unit right in front of it. You can smell it inside your house,” Wilson said. “I mean, this is human solid -- solid human waste. It’s upsetting that this is my surroundings I have to see after I come home from a long day.”

She said last week the waste sat for several days before a maintenance worker used a hose and broom to wash the sewage away onto the neighboring street, which is Fountain View Drive.

Wilson said the problem started again on Sunday and into Monday, and the waste was washed down with a hose.

“No kind of sanitation of any kind has happened when this has gone on," she said. "They just hose it into the street and move on. It’s going through the gate, down into the street. There’s children that walk past there. Everyone that lives here and anywhere around this block is walking their dog back and forth past there.”

Where is the problem coming from?

From the beginning, Wilson has suspected it’s an issue with a sewer line on the apartment side of the complex because of the sewage pipe where the waste is coming from.

“I have reached out to the city, I’ve reached out to the apartment complex, I’ve reached out to our board members here and nobody has any answers yet,” Wilson said.

She said the apartment complex told her it was a city issue.

KPRC Channel 2 News reached out to Houston Public Works.

Around 6 p.m. Monday, city workers arrived at the complex to check out the situation. Workers looked at the main sewage lines, which are along the back side of the complex, and didn’t find any issues.

They walked over to the initial area of complaint and met with Wilson, but the investigation stopped because the city workers said it was private property.

In a statement, Houston Public Works said:

A Houston Water maintenance team inspected the site and determined the City’s main sewer lines were clear and not the cause of the backup or overflow.

The sewage backup happened on private property. It is considered an isolated event because it did not occur anywhere other than at the Fountain Apartment Complex.

The city is not allowed to inspect privately owned systems and therefore cannot determine or comment on the cause of the of the backup.

The apartment maintenance team provided the cleanup.

“I am so thankful for them and for you for getting them out there," Wilson said. "It did fall on the apartment complex, apparently, which I think most of us already knew. It’s just good to have it solidified to know who we speak to."

The city of Houston Health Department also made a visit to the apartment complex and issued a notice of violation on the door. Some of the violations include:

  • Permitting the deposit of an offensive matter
  • Permitting the overflow of a foul liquid, hazardous to health, along with introducing the matter into the storm sewer.

KPRC Channel 2 News reached out to the apartment complex last week, as well as after hours on Monday, but have yet to hear back.

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