Sewage problems continue for some in East Moline

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Sewage with nowhere to go. For more than a month, some people in East Moline have dealt with frozen sewer lines.

“I think it's just disgusting,” said Wayne Carlson.

Carlson's sewer line has been frozen since February 17, 2014 and he has started pumping it out on his own through his neighbor’s line.

“I'm out here, 3 times a week just playing in poop,” he said.

Bill Houser’s sewage was coming out of the ground.

“It was just bubbling up out of the ground, right there,” he said.

Several other homes in the area of 40th Street and 4th Avenue A and B in East Moline have the same issue.

“One resident, thank goodness actually has had their sewer service open and flowing free now,” said Tim Kammler, Director of Engineering for the City of East Moline.

The City of East Moline has sent a crew out to pump out the sewage twice, a service  they say is more than necessary because the frozen line is the homeowner’s responsibility—but those impacted want more done.

“I'd like them to just fix it,” said Carlson.

Mostly because of what he and others have been finding. The City of East Moline required those living in the neighborhood to install the sewer system a few years ago. According to Kammler, pipes should have been installed at a minimum 42 to 48 inches. Carlson believes his are only 36 inches deep. Part of Houser’s pipe is only 22 inches below the ground.

Several of the impacted residents were at the East Moline City Council meeting Monday, March 17, 2014.

“If there seems to be an issue where a contractor that was employed by the City, that did a substandard installation, that's something that we would look into,” said Kammler.

For now, Kammler says he has been coordinating help to clear the pipes for impacted residents, a service the residents will have to pay for.

Bill and Wayne are just ready to have the problem fixed.


  • Kelly

    Mr Kammler said at the meeting he hopes for warmer weather for us…well, great…that’s great. But what about the following winter, or the winter after that? We have been flushing only when we have to for over a month. The pipes aren’t buried deep enough and my husband has been outside pumping out our tank every 2 days. Not to mention there is now sewage backed up in the cleanout pipe enclosure across the street from our house…you can smell it from across the road. As far as we know, there is not supposed to be any water in this. My husband called Mr Kammler about 3 pm to report it, and he said he’d get someone right out to look at it….Nobody showed up and it is still leaking out of the cement into the grass. It is now 10:30 pm.

    • Kelly

      Update on the sewage in the city tank across the street: The city finally showed up the next morning, late. 2 pipes were busted off, and a valve was also broken. City left, police came to the neighborhood asking my husband what he thought caused that. He replied he thought it had been frozen. (Keep in mind this “tank” for lack of better word, had about 8 inches of ice in it when this all started). The officer then asked if he had ever seen anyone, kids, etc. hanging around it vandalizing it. Well, that was a no. Then, later, the city came back, fixed the pipes and put a padlock on the tank. Nothing else was ever said or done as far as that sewage goes.

  • anonymous

    How can Mr. Kammler say on TV if a contractor was hired by the city and the job they did was done incorrectly that it is the resident’s responsibility? How is that legally possible? Why should we have to pay when it is the main line that is frozen???? Why did they put such a crappy system in to begin with? Shouldn’t it be the same system as the rest of East Moline? The city forced us to have this system, made us pay for it, and it is not even the same as the rest of East Moline. The pumps that they installed are only guaranteed for two years and they are $1500 a piece. Maybe it is time to consult an attorney. I think all of these residents that are having this problem should meet and discuss what legal action should be taken.

    • Kelly

      You know, I am not usually one to lawyer up, but I think in this case, since so many are affected, it may be time to take some action. Highly doubtful Mr Kammler is going to have anyone look into this. I am all for having a neighborhood meeting of the minds.

  • mark

    Wayne and Bill did a great job speaking at the council meeting, but there needs to be better organization to make the city notice that residents are not satisfied and that means we need to get people that are not affected but live in the area to show up in numbers.

    we had maybe 10-12 people at the meeting,

    • Kelly

      Hey Mark, Wayne’s wife here…I would really like to get more people to speak up….there is strength in numbers, and just because spring is coming, well, that is not a cure for this situation. And just because someone was not effected this winter, does not mean they won’t be next winter. Not to mention the health hazard issues from having sewage leaking into yards from broken pipes, etc. And I know that has happened. I wish I could have made it to the meeting on time, but I work til 6:30. More neighbors need to speak up at these meetings. Or we need to find another route in which to pursue this. So, if anyone has any ideas…please speak up.

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