HOW TO REPORT A SEWER BACKUP
If you are experiencing a sewer backup, have limited or no sewer service within your home or notice water bubbling out of a sewer manhole in the street, you may be experiencing a sewer back up or some other internal plumbing issue. Please call the MDC Command Center at (860) 278-7850 press 1 immediately.
Occasionally, sanitary sewer pipes fail or become blocked, causing sewage to back-up through the sewer lateral and into unprotected plumbing fixtures such as set tubs, toilets, or washing machine drains in the basement area.
For your guidance please read the 37A Form (download PDF) to assist you until our first responders arrive at your location.
After receiving your call, the MDC will dispatch its emergency responders to investigate the sewer issue. If we determine the backup is due to a blockage in the MDC’s main sewer, MDC will immediately dispatch the sewer department crew to restore service, by cleaning and/or repairing the main sewer.
If, however, MDC determines the blockage is not in the main sewer, we will inform you that the problem is in the sewer lateral (the sewer line that runs from your house to the main sewer) and the 37A form will be given to you and clearly explained. Since ownership and maintenance of the sewer lateral is the homeowner’s responsibility, MDC staff will discuss your options as outlined in the 37A form.
It is imperative that you call the MDC command center first if you are experiencing a sewer backup. This important step could save you unnecessary expense as well as give you the proper guidance and coverage under difficult circumstances. The MDC will NOT assume liability if the property owner, licensed plumber, drain layer or sewer cleaner does NOT call the MDC before performing any work.
WHAT TO DO UNTIL HELP ARRIVES
While every effort will be made to respond to your backup problem as quickly as possible, you should be aware of what to do while help is on the way.
Avoid using toilets, sinks, showers, washing machines, dishwashers, etc. as wastewater from these appliances has nowhere to go, your backup will only get worse.
Minimize contact with the wastewater backing up in your home. After the problem has been resolved, wash basement walls and floors with a disinfectant.
Never operate or disconnect an electrical appliance or main fuse box while standing in water. Play it safe! Call your local electric utility if you need your power shut off to “protect” appliances.