Jacksonville tenants seeking help days after flooding

Published on Monday, 4 November 2013 22:41 - Written by KYTX CBS19 Reports

Those heavy rains seen last week have caused some headaches for East Texans several days later. People in Jacksonville, even believe the flooding they’ve experienced, could have been prevented.

Things still aren’t back to normal for families that live at The Lodge apartment complex. One family’s belongings were soaked in sewage water from a nearby ditch that overflowed early Halloween morning.

“We woke up and there’s ankle-deep water in our house. We opened our door and it’s like a river outside,” Mandi Lovelady, a tenant at The Lodge, said.

The flooding ruined most of her toddler’s things.

“His toys, his books, we had to get rid of some clothes,” Ms. Lovelady said.

She is blaming her family’s hardship on a clogged-up drainage system that she says is the city of Jacksonville’s responsibility to maintain. They also claim a fallen retaining wall, didn’t help matters in the downpour.

CBS19 checked with city of Jacksonville leaders, and they admit a drainage pipe under the road did have debris and some furniture in it. But, they say, that’s natural.

“Anytime you have a drainage structure like that, it’s subject to getting stopped up from time to time,” Will Cole, Director of Public Works in Jacksonville, said.

One tenant says she asked the city for months to clean out the nearby ditches.

“Over the summer, we put in so many complaints to the city. We want them to be cleaning these sewage lines out in case something like this were to happen. It’s not our fault,” Virginia Hardeman, another tenant, said.

In response, the city of Jacksonville has filed a claim with its insurance company last week and is waiting to hear back on who is liable.

That determination should be made within a matter of days, and could result in reimbursement for those tenants who suffered losses.

The owner of The Lodge did not want to comment on the flooding.