CHARLOTTE COUNTY, FL – A Charlotte County man’s yard is a total mess and the health department says it’s creating a potential public health hazard for everyone around.
Water from his septic tank isn’t draining and pipes are crushed and broken.
Two Sundays ago, Bruce Gorneault saw something bubbling out of the ground at his Harbour Heights home. When he dug it up, water came shooting out.
“I was hoping I hit oil; unfortunately it was water. I kind of knew it wasn’t a good thing,” he says.
It is not good at all. The more Gorneault dug, the more problems he found. He says the pipes in the drain field of his septic system are in bad shape. Water is collecting in puddles and mold is starting to grow.
“You can clearly smell sewage. It’s not a pleasant thing that you want people to come over to see and smell,” Gorneault points out.
Englewood Environmental installed the septic tank six years ago. Gorneault believes the septic company damaged the pipes during the installation.
Englewood Environmental says it’s impossible to tell exactly who did the damage to these pipes six years ago while the house was being built. The company is offering to replace the system at cost, which totals $3,000.
“I paid for this the first time, I shouldn’t have to pay for it again,” Gorneault counters.
The manager at Englewood Environmental told us the discounted rate is fair since the tank isn’t under a warranty.
While this private battle of who pays plays out, the Charlotte County Health Department says the mess is impacting other people in southwest Florida calling it a public health hazard.
It is worried the system could transmit disease or contaminate the groundwater.
It is working with the State to determine if the contractor responsible for the damaged pipes should be fined.
“In the meanwhile, I have to sit here and smell this lovely stuff all day. It’s just not pleasant,” Gorneault says.