Raw sewage floods pensioner’s home after neighbours flush nappies and underpants down toilet

RESIDENTS have hit out at neighbours following a flat being flooded with raw sewage due to ‘unflushable’ items being deposited down toilets.

Thursday, 9th January 2020, 9:57 am
Updated Thursday, 9th January 2020, 12:16 pm

Sanitary towels, tampons, nappies and even a pair underpants are just some of the items residents claim have been causing blockages to their Waterlooville flat’s pipes.

On New Year’s Day, Maggie Mitas, aged 70, awoke to find her hallway and toilet ‘ankle deep in sewage’.

Maggie said: ‘I heard water running and came into the passage to find I was walking through faeces, urine and toilet paper. I went into the bathroom to find it overflowing with raw sewage – the smell was disgusting.’

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Maggie Mitas is pleased that the sewage leak that wrecked her carpets on News Years Day is now being rectified by Portsmouth City Council and Southern Water. Ms Mitas is pictured at her home in Waterlooville. Picture: Chris Moorhouse (080120-05)

It’s not the first time there has been a problem with blocked pipes.

Neighbour, Natalie Webb, 32, added: ‘I’ve never had it as bad as Maggie but my toilet has overflowed. When the pipes become blocked you can here it starting to bubble. I’ve even had sewage and poo flowing back up into my bath – its disgusting.’

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The Magpie Walk properties are owned by Portsmouth City Council. Both the council and Southern Water have put the problem down to residents in the flats flushing non disposable items down the toilet.

Maggie, who has osteoarthritis, said: ‘Workmen are regularly having to come out and unblock the drains. Last week they found sanitary towels and even a nappy.

‘There are families living with young children upstairs and Southern Water have said there is a big problem with baby wipes being flushed down the toilet.

‘People need to be more aware of what problems what they flush down the toilet can cause. It’s the flats on the bottom floor which are affected, often by what is being flushed down from people living on the floors above.’

Local business owner, Natalie, added: ‘There has even been a pair of underpants found. People need to be more responsible.’

The council and Southern Water have confirmed the latest blockage was caused by ‘baby wipes and bags’.

Elvira Gabos, manager of the Unflushables Team, said: ‘We work hard all year to raise awareness explaining what happens when people put the wrong things down their loos.

‘Flushing items like wet-wipes is like Russian Roulette – you never know when it will cause a block leading to internal flooding. That’s why we always remind people to only flush the three P’s – paper, poo and pee.’

While the council did clear up the sewage on the same day, Maggie was left with sewage sodden carpets for 24 hours. The council have now removed the carpet and are providing a new non slip surface.

However, both Maggie and Natalie are concerned about a repeat incident.

Maggie said: ‘The problem hasn’t gone away and I’m worried it could happen again.’

‘People in the flats should be sent letters warning them about the dangers of flushing certain items,’ added Natalie.