family culvert

James and Janet Monahan and their granddaughter Dalilia look at the small culvert that goes under their driveway. The Souris Line Road residents are asking the province to replace the small structure insisting it is impeding the flow of water in the ditch. Each year, in winter and spring, the couple’s yard and basement fills up with the backlogged water. Charlotte MacAulay photo

The province’s fix for continuous flooding on a Souris Line Road property won’t work, say the homeowners who are frustrated with the lack of government response.

Janet and James Monahan have been dealing with a flooded basement twice a year for several years.

The Monahans live in a hollow on Souris Line Road. They contend all the water that comes rushing down the hill in the ditch during the January thaw and again in spring has nowhere to go but their front yard.

On Thursday a Public Works crew arrived at the site. The department of Transportation was there doing routine maintenance and are aware of the Monahan’s request to keep the water flowing.

“They are just in the area doing routine maintenance to make sure the whole system is working properly,” Stephen Szwatc, Acting Director of Highway Maintenance, Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy, said.

The crew was there clearing the ditches on both sides of the road and flushing out a culvert that runs under the road.

Ms Monahan said larger culverts in both their driveway and at the right of way next door would fix the problem.

The couple has one sump pump that runs continuously, and during the heavy thaw someone has to be at home to man a second pump.

Mr Monahan points to the culvert opening under the driveway. He says it’s small and likely filled with silt.

“When the culverts are that small and ice up there is no chance the water will flow,” he said.

A puddle of red murky water sits stagnant in the ditch in front of the culvert.

Across the road at the end of a province-owned culvert the water is thigh deep and just as muddy.

“We are not asking for much,” Ms Monahan said. “We just don’t want to have to deal with flooding every spring.”

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