Class action lawsuit filed over Lincoln Park flooding in August

- Major flooding in Lincoln Park has left residents furious about sewage backups in their basements and some are filing a class action suit against the city.

Four weeks ago, 2 inches of rain in two hours caused a mountain a problems for people living in the Council Point Park subdivision of Lincoln Park.
Now some of them are joining together and suing the city for their flood damage.

"Replacing things and building things back together, I'm probably looking at $50,000," said Bob Holbird, a flood victim.

Four weeks after the sewers backed up into homes and you can still see who got hit hard.

"It's just continuously mounting up," Holbird said.

The repairs left to do now are nothing compared to what Holbird was dealing with in the immediate aftermath of August 16.

"I come flying down the stairs to see what was going on. The whole place was soaked," he said.

He's one of the 50 or so named in a class action lawsuit against the city, claiming negligence led to this issue.

"This is sewage. It was not water or a broken pipe. It was sewage," said Phillip Bazzo, the class-action lawsuit attorney.

Holbird met Bazzo shortly during the initial clean up.

"When (the attorney) came by I had a 30 yard dumpster almost full," Holbird said.

According to the attorney, what happened to his basement could have been avoided if the city would have restricted the amount of water flowing into the system.

"This is not expensive or rocket science. This doesn't require much planning. You just have to have a will to do it," Bazzo said.

He points to the sewer grates as a quick fix. Some in the city have fewer holes than others. In his opinion, they should all be this way.

"You want to keep the water in the streets and out of people's basements," Bazzo said.

After hearing this, Holbird was on board with the lawsuit.

"It makes you want turn around take everyone that's in office and throw them out," he said.

The City of Lincoln Park acknowledges the problems from the flood on its webpage.

Stating the sewer system was overwhelmed and attached a claim form residents with flood damage can fill out, it states those looking for money must prove the system had a defect and the city knew about it.

That’s something Holbird says he plans to with the help of his attorney.

Bazzo says if there are others who want to join the lawsuit, they have until Sept. 29 to do so.

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