Dear PoP – Props to DC Water crew and useful sewer info

Photo by PoPville flickr user ekelly80

“Dear PoP,

Typically, DC residents have a dim view of the effectiveness and attitudes of DC govt and utility workers. However, I wanted to drop a line saying “job well done” for a DC WASA crew that came out to our house in Columbia Heights last night.

The story goes like this: last night we had our second sewer blockage in a week. Last week the whole house was blocked up and we called a plumber to come out and fix it. It was messy, to say the least. The plumber determined the blockage was at the sewer, off our property line. They fixed it and it cost a bit of money because it was a big job. But afterwards they told me that in the future if the problem occurs again (at the sewer, not on our property) then DC Water will come out and fix any subsequent blockages for free. Basically, the first time the sewer blocks up, plumbers fix it and submit a ‘sewer report’ to the city, and then if it happens again, then it is DC Water’s responsibility. I would never have known this had my plumber not told me.

So, anyways, last night, apparently the block came back (who knows why) and I called my plumber and he immediately called DC Water and then told me that they should be out that same night. I was skeptical, to say the least. Well, sure enough, within an hour, two big trucks come rumbling up to our house. We talk, I tell them what’s up, they look at the drains, and then put some large hoses down the access pipe and clear-out pipe in front of our house. Kafloosh, the whole darned thing is cleared out and fixed within a few minutes. Problem solved.

And the guys who came out were totally professional and effective. So I am letting you know because I wanted to recognize their work, not just because the utility and DC govt folks often get crapped on, but also because these guys have an especially gross job with pretty bad hours. But they were good natured, helpful, explained everything and best of all fixed it all within a few minutes late at night. And, although I sent a ‘job well done’ to DC water itself, I think it’s important for the larger community to know as well.

So, kudos to the DC Water sewer emergency crew! They turned what I feared was going to be a nightmare into just a minor inconvenience.

Ps: Steve Miller plumbing, in Maryland, deserves an ‘atta boy’ as well. He really helped us out, and we never would have known that DC water clears sewage blocks for homes on short notice and for free if he hadn’t told us. Also, his folks were very professional, quick, and effective as well. I strongly recommend them.”

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