Oakland County Road Commission and White Lake Residents Continue to do Battle over Inferior Leaching Systems
White Lake Residents have been under water for nearly 2 years while the OCRC neglects to repair damaged leach basin
Susan Downey began calling the Oakland County Road Commission back in the Fall of 2008, when the ditch in her front yard would fill up with water. “The water doesn’t go anywhere,” said Downey. “It just sits there and becomes stagnant. Mosquitoes are a huge problem and my front yard is populated by frogs, ducks, turtles and muskrats.”
When the Oakland County Road Commission sent someone out to assess the situation, they did pump the water out, but unfortunately, they also sucked the gravel bedding out as well. Now the leaching basin has sunk about 2 feet into the ground and the cover is partially covered with muck. They damaged the system and refuse to fix it so things are expected to just get worse.
The ditch has a catch basin at its lowest point where water is supposed to go into something the OCRC calls a “dry well.” It’s just a hole in the ground that fills up with water…it doesn’t get pumped or drained anywhere. “We are at the mercy of Mother Nature,” said Downey. “When the ditch is full of water, so is my crawl space, which cannot be repaired if there is no place for a sump pump to send the water to.”
The problem has become worse yet with a nearby neighbor with a failing septic system. Now raw sewage has been added to the long list of problems caused by the high water table. When Susan inquired at the White Lake Township offices about getting the problem fixed they sent her to the Oakland County Road Commission. Their response was “If it isn’t hurting the road we will not fix it.”
Susan has created a blog where she continues to update the public about the problem. She is hoping that there is someone out there with “connections” or some advice as to what can be done to resolve the problem. Please visit http://oaklandcountyroadcommission.blogspot.com/ for updates and to make comments or offer advice.
About Susan Downey: Susan Downey is a White Lake homeowner and tax payer. She and her neighbors are concerned with a problem that has plagued them for years. They have contacted the township and the county, OCRC, Oakland County Health Department, and County Commissioner, Jim Runestad about the problem and have been unable to obtain a satisfactory solution.
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