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Hinckley homeowners: Why are we flooded again?

By ANNA MEILER

HINCKLEY, N.Y. (WKTV) -- Residents in Hinckley are frustrated to find more water in their homes after the heavy downpour Wednesday night.

Several inches accumulated in Main street homes and the owners are asking why this keeps happening. The flooding that rocked the Mohawk Valley in June and July damaged these same properties, but they also blamed the flooding on the construction of a new sewage system.

Main Street residents didn't want the sewage system in the first place, but by order of the State Department of Conservation, the town of Trenton had to install it because all of the storm water and sewage from the homes was emptying right into small streams in the area.

The company handling the sewage system construction, Jablonski Excavating, has since taken responsibility for the damage because workers left plywood blocking a pipe, which caused the water to back up into resident's homes. Their insurance is now paying for them to be repaired.

One woman whose house was destroyed and completely gutted said she was forced to camp in her mother's backyard with her children until Sep. 1 when she was able to secure a rental. But, rental costs on top of paying for utilities at her home have been burdensome.

"Our whole summer was shot, between being homeless and watching everything go in dumpsters. There's been three large dumpsters here since the flood. We've lost stuff from family, antiques," said Crystal Graves.

After finding more water in her home Thursday morning, she said it's time for the town to step up.

"I think the town needs to come up here and physically see it and something needs to be done because obviously it's going to keep recurring. For six homes, six families to be displaced, lose items and take a chance of it continuing. I mean, first time was obviously a surprise, the second time, something needs to be done," she said.

Town of Trenton supervisor Joe Smith said, "the town does not believe this flooding has to do with the new sewer system. We're addressing resident's concerns."

The president of Jablonski Excavating, Steve Jablonski, said the recent bout of flooding is likely from water backing up from the West Canada Creek into the old, existing pipes and into people's homes. He will be on Main Street checking out the situation Friday.

"The question is whose at fault and who's going to pay for it?" he said.

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