Lone Star woman’s house floods with city sewage for 7th time

“They said ‘well, it’s not the city, it’s you,’ said, ‘from your house to the road is your problem,’” she says. Mary’s cleaned up many times, losing her carpet
Published: Sep. 28, 2022 at 3:15 PM CDT|Updated: Sep. 28, 2022 at 9:16 PM CDT
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - An East Texas woman is desperately seeking help to clean up and restore her home, after it’s been flooded with raw sewage, she says for the seventh time.

Since May the Lone Star area homeowner has had to deal with the foul smelling problem, saying she was getting no action from city officials.

Mary Robertson says the nightmare started when a city sewage line became clogged near her home,

“This home is all I have. And when I retire this is all I have to come home to,” she says.

A clog in a city line across the street created the backup, which began to periodically flood her home with sewage, the last time being Saturday night.

“It has happened seven different occasions,” Mary says.

Robertson says she contacted the city for help.

“They said ‘well, it’s not the city, it’s you,’ said, ‘from your house to the road is your problem,’” she says.

Mary’s cleaned up many times, losing her carpet out of the home, and believes she’ll lose much of her furniture from exposure to the sewage.

“It just started overflowing, out of the toilets, like Niagara Falls. We would just like the house decontaminated, and any furniture and flooring we lost replaced, just get us back to where we were. We were told that due to a tort claims act, that it would be unlawful for the city to use funds to pay for remedial damages,” says Mary’s daughter Cindy Schaffer.

“It’s just going to happen again until the city fixes their line. So we’re stuck between a rock and a hard place. I understand the law, I understand the tort, but the right thing here would be to fix this problem,” says family friend and pastor Joseph Adams.

While we were there, the Lone Star mayor dropped by with a possible solution.

“She can file a claim through the city; we’ll in turn file a claim back through our insurance carrier, see what we can do to cover these damages,” said Mayor Randy Hodges.

The city is going to put a shut-off valve on their pipeline before it gets to Robertson’s house.

“I’m not trying to get rich out of this. I just want my house replaced so that we can live in it again,” says Mary.

Robertson and her daughter have been displaced by the flooding and are hoping some action can be taken to help her clean it up and eventually move back in.

A representative of senator Bryan Hughes office is scheduled to meet with her Thursdsay to see what help can be offered.