Residents responsibilities for unblocking and repairing drains
From 01 October, 2011 property owners are no longer responsible for certain sewer pipes that connect their homes to public sewers. A drain becomes a sewer when it serves more than one property.
New legislation has transferred responsibility for these pipes, called private sewers and lateral drains, to Southern Water. Before then property owners were often unaware that they were responsible for these pipes until they faced a repair bill, this former situation caused confusion and sometimes caused disputes between neighbours. The Government wants clear ownership and better long-term maintenance for the sewer network.
Property owners remain responsible for all pipes that serve one property and that are inside that properties boundary, these are considered private drains.
Visit www.southernwater.co.uk for more information.
If you are having problems with blocked and overflowing pipes that are not serving just one property or the blockage is not on the property please contact Southern Water on 0845278 0845.
I want to make a complaint about a neighbouring property's drains
Where Southern Water have identified that the drain in question is private and therefore the responsibility of the property owner to maintain we may be able to assist.
For complaints about foul smells and sewerage leaks from private below ground drains please complete our online form.
If the problem is from guttering or downpipes please report this to our Housing team.
For roadside gullies and other drains on the highways please refer your complaint to East Sussex County Council on 0345 6080 193.
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- Make a Noise Complaint
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