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Water in ditch problem Who do I call?

We live in a subdivision that was built back in the late 70s. The grading was very poorly done. When we built our house a few years ago we were aware of the issue but it never seemed to be a long term thing. Ya in the spring it would be wet but it would eventually dry up and all would be good. Before we built the road commisioner came in and "cleaned" out some of the ditches. Well I think he did more harm then good. We continue to call and try and get him to fix it but he said it's out of his hands and nothing can be done. Now I'm no engineer that has anything to do with land and water but I know there has to be something he's just not willing to help us solve the issue. So my question is who would I call to come out and survey the area and give the people of our subdivision some options? I'm thinking we need some sort of civil engineer to come in but how in the world would I find one espcially one that specialized in our needs?

Re: Water in ditch problem Who do I call?

Really? No help? After all those episodes I watched where they talk about all these different contractors and what they specialize in no one has an idea on who to contact to help with this issue?:confused:

Blue RidgeParkway
Re: Water in ditch problem Who do I call?

you could contact the ASCE for a referral for a private sector hydraulic engineer that specializes in storm water management flood maping and catchment flood management planning but expect to pay a bunch of money.

i'd first get your area maps from the US geological survey and the army corps of engineers (or mabe you get flood plane maps from FEMA now?) and use the freedom of information act to get copies of your local area storm water systems, sanitary systems, and streets and highway maps from the city county state.

seems you are the only one with the "issue" built on already wet boggy lot and it remains wet and boggy after you covered over part of it whatever the issue and your "needs" are supposed to be?? drainage maybe? cant tell if your complaint is the neighborhood sheds its water to your lot or your lot couldn't then and now still cant absorb its own rainfall or wont drain off to another area or something else.

Re: Water in ditch problem Who do I call?

Hey, smoke ... if i understand your problem correctly, you have water in a ditch that won't drain? Is that it? Or do you have (also?) soggy ground on your lot? Is your lot where the land was normally and naturally draining?

if it's a problem with standing water in a ditch, you might contact your county health folk so they can come and check it out for mosquito farms... they'll spray, of course, and might make the proper agency provide proper drainage.

If I've misunderstood your situation, sorry. please spell it out clearer for literal folks like me.. :o

Re: Water in ditch problem Who do I call?

Marjorie, you got it about right but it's not only me but about 8 other neighbors. The subdivision was started back in the late 70s. I think the realitor that put it togeather had some ties on the county board to get it passed because it wasn't set up very well. But from my understanding from some of my neighbors that have been there for quite some time there wasn't an issue until the road commisioner came out and "cleaned" the ditches so they would "flow" better. But he more or less made a big mud hole that no one can mow now because of the mess he made and water just stands in there. So now we have standing water with lilly pads and cat tails and weeds about 5 ft tall in these ditches (I put on boots and my weed eater and cut them down to help try to keep it looking nice. We did call the county health department and they said they can't do anything and that we just need to put in those little disks in the water to help keep the mosquitos down.

Re: Water in ditch problem Who do I call?

If you are looking for a site engineer to propose solutions, just look at some commercial building projects (strip mall, business construction - somebody like McCrone in our area) in your area. Usually they self advertise with a sign on those projects saying who is engineering it.

Also, if you look at the agenda or minutes from the county or city planning committee you will probably see some engineering firms listed as requestors or presenters.

Our county has a storm water runoff inspector, does yours? If so he/she would know who they have worked with in the past.

Re: Water in ditch problem Who do I call?

So you have a ditch.... some yahoo came along and 'improved' it by digging it deeper and wider for you... water collects but doesn't' drain away, right? Was there ever a place for it to drain?

Is your area in the unincorporated county or are you in a city?
Seems to me like there should be someone at a county level in charge of runoff / drainage.... if not, why? If they're in someone's pocket, it might be time for a little expose fun.

If you're covered only by the county, not a city, and get no satisfaction from anyone in the county, consider the state. IF nothing else, with your lily pads and cattails, you might be able to get your area declared a wetlands or water fowl refuge, hahaha! (sorry, got carried away).

Do you have a county commissioner? A health dept worth any thing at all? How about your state rep? Or call the news media and have them come out with a camera crew and do a story on it. That's done around here occasionally and it's amazing how things get done after that.

What does your county / city / state have on the books about rainwater drain or runoff? Everyone has something.

Good luck and happy hunting.+

Re: Water in ditch problem Who do I call?


I agree with some of the other suggestions, but your MAIN point of attack is to get those 8 similarly-affected neighbors together to sign a petition that you can submit to the town council, the city manager, mayor, etc.

Make up a name to call yourselves--like the "Concerned Citizens of (your neighborhood or street)"

Contact your local representative or city council member & request the chance to address the town council at their next meeting.

Draw up written petition stressing the dangers of the existing water trench---like a neighborhood kid almost drowned there, mosquitos that carry Nile virus, & similar health hazards.

That way, if something isn't done, & something happens, the city can be sued bigtime for negligence.

People have started wars & revolutions with less than 8 people.

Go get 'em!

Re: Water in ditch problem Who do I call?

After reading bp21901's post I did some more searching and found that our county just created a storm water group under the planning and development last year. I'll try and get them involved. The problem is that we are under a "township" and not city or rual or county control. And the township it's self doesn't have much money or idea on how to handle this. I sure hope the county steps up otherwise I'll have to do what other suggested and gather up the troops and start a commitee of concerned citizens.

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