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Sewage spills out near homes in San Tan Valley

Sewage spills near San Tan Valley homes
Posted at 9:23 PM, Dec 22, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-23 00:23:27-05

SAN TAN VALLEY, AZ — People living in a San Tan Valley community are demanding Johnson Utilities inspect and address potential problems at one of its lift stations after raw sewage spilled out next to their homes.

Residents in Morning Sun Farms told ABC15 the sewage started leaking out of the facility — which borders homes in the neighborhood — on Friday night. Workers put up caution tape and used a cleaning agent, but by Saturday night there was still a strong sewage smell in the area.

“It’s crazy, I just don’t even understand how [Johnson Utilities] can continue to operate,” said Kristy Drew, who lives next to the lift station.

“It's offensive to just have to walk from your car to your front door sometimes,” Drew said. ”And having people come over? It’s just embarrassing.”

It’s not the first time the neighborhood has been forced to deal with a sewage problem. In July, a broken line caused wastewater to spill onto streets in the community.

Neighbors told ABC15 they had to call the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office because they couldn’t get an immediate response from the utility company.

Drew said there have been at least three similar backups at the Morning Sun Farms lift station.

The Arizona Corporation Commission fined Johnson Utilities $600,000 earlier this year for various problems. Another company, EPCOR, is now controlling operations.

ABC15 reached out to Johnson Utilities regarding the lift station spill and what, if anything, the company is doing to address the smell but hasn’t heard back.