Young mum, 22 horrified as council flat floods with ‘thick brown’ human waste every day

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Katie and her autistic son were left with a house flooding with raw sewage every time her neighbours flushed the toilet

A young mum has been left horrified after raw sewage flooded out of her toilet and bath every time her neighbours flushed their loos. Katie Burden, 22, noticed the bathroom in her council flat overflowing with human waste earlier this month.

Katie and her autistic son Arlo, three, alerted her local council at Norwich, Norfolk, to the problem but had to live in filth for a week before it was fixed. The mum-of-one, said: “I was told there was an issue with the drains and pipes outside the block of flats but the council couldn’t do anything until July 14.

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“There was wastewater filled with poo and even sanitary products blocking the toilet. Every time my neighbours flushed their toilet it would come out of mine - my floor was filthy.”

Katie’s flat bathroom can be seen covered in thick brown waste both from her toilet and her neighbour’s toilets, whilst sewage also came out her bath’s plug hole through the connected pipes and filled up her tub.

She recalls desperately trying to keep her toddler away from the mess which was continually seeping out while at the sane time ringing the council’s helpline. Katie spent hours on her hands and knees using towels and a mop to soak up the sewage - but Arlo’s sensory bath toys had all been soaked.

And every time the disgusting incident occured, Katie has to ferry the towels through the kitchen, the sewage would drip on to the tiles which have now had to be ripped up.

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Young mum, 22 horrified as Norwich council flat floods with ‘thick brown’ human wasteYoung mum, 22 horrified as Norwich council flat floods with ‘thick brown’ human waste
Young mum, 22 horrified as Norwich council flat floods with ‘thick brown’ human waste | SWNS

Katie said: “I had to use all my towels to try and soak it up. It was vile. Arlo is autistic and all his sensory bath toys were ruined as well.

“It made me feel nauseous having to try and clean everything up while making sure my son and pets were staying away from it all. It got to the point where I just sobbed my eyes out because no one was helping me or my little boy. I kept trying to call the council to help and telling them how bad it was, but they just kept saying they couldn’t do anything. They even told me to stop ringing them.”

The council eventually organised to send someone round to fix the problem a week after the pipes burst - but never offered to temporally rehome Katie and Arlo. The issue has now been resolved, but Katie is still waiting for new tiles to be laid in her kitchen and bathroom which were ruined by the sewage.


A Norwich City Council spokeswoman said: “The leak was clearly upsetting and distressing for everyone in the household and we’re very sorry we weren’t able to fix the problem faster. Our out-of-hours contractors couldn’t fix the scaled pipe at the property at the same time as they cleared the blockage.

“The repair required equipment that was not immediately available but our contractor was able to return two days later to complete the repair.”

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