Ogden City administrators seek $1M for emergency sewer repair

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OGDEN — As water started rising in her basement, Elizabeth Herrera said she, at first, didn’t know where it was coming from.

“We got about 8 to 10 inches,” Herrera said. “We were all barefoot. We didn’t think it was sewer.”

By the time she realized what it was, the water had already spread across their basement, damaging clothes, appliances and family keepsakes.

“We just barely moved into the house in May, so we have all kinds of boxes and all of our belongings down there,” Herrera said.

Her home was one of about eight that flooded. Ogden city's chief administrator, Mark Johnson, said the flooding came as the old lines became overwhelmed with rising flood waters.

“This line is about 80 years old,” Johnson explained. “But also, sometimes people pump water that they shouldn’t be putting into the sewer — off drains, sump pumps, those kinds of things.”

In coming weeks, administrators will ask the city council for $1 million in emergency funds to replace the line. That kind of work was already in the plans within the next couple of years.

“We just thought moving it up made a lot of sense,” Johnson said. “We have cash on hand in case of these kinds of emergencies, so that we can handle these kinds of things. And in the sewer funds, we have cash that’s available for emergencies.”

Herrera said it’s already too late for her family: Black mold exposed as drywall was being torn away has been making her son sick.

“He missed fifteen days of school just because of everything that happened with the sewer damage,” she said.

Herrera is already in the process of moving. She said she has filed a claim with the city for damages to personal property, but has not heard whether anything will be covered.


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