A Utica man kicked off his summer with a sewage backup on Memorial Day in his basement. That's the first time it happened. Now, as we approach the end of summer, it's happened for a third time.

Rocky Graziano is a resident in East Utica, near Proctor High School. His home is on Hillview Drive and the first time the sewers backed up into his basement, Graziano said he had two inches of water and waste to deal with. He says, due to the holiday nobody was available from the DPW to respond to the incident. Graziano says, "I called a company from Vernon to come and snake our line, to get the water to recede, which it did somewhat." The next day the DPW was in front of his home clearing the main sewer line, due to what they said was grease build up. When he asked for answers the city had none, so he "bit the bullet."

He bit the bullet for about three weeks, until it happened again. It was Thursday, June 20th the amount of sewage went from two inches the first time, to about 6-7 inches in some parts of his basement. For that incident, Graziano brought in a professional to clean it up which was very expensive. Graziano claims, the DPW had been clearing the lines in several locations in the area that day.

Now, it has happened a third time and Graziano does not know where to turn. He and his wife had company over the weekend and they were asked how the basement situation was going. Then, the rain came. Graziano says, "I went downstairs to check my sump pump, as the rain had started to really come down. And the sump pump was working. As I went back upstairs, I heard heavy gurgling and saw that my drain/trap was now spewing black water and waste into my basement. While I was thankful to be there and catch it and record it, I was helpless to do anything to stop it."

While I was thankful to be there and catch it and record it, I was helpless to do anything to stop it.

Then, the clean-up began again. With the combination of the three backup incidents, he's been faced with approximately $10,000 in damages. He's lost musical and band equipment, he has lost his washer and dryer and he now may have to replace his furnace and hot water tank. Not to mention, he has dealt with his neighbors waste in his basement more times than anyone should have to.

Since this has all happened, he traveled up and down the street getting signatures for a petition to have the city fix the problem. While asking neighbors for petition signatures, he learned that other neighbors were dealing the same problem. Some of the residents, who have lived there for nearly 50 years, have never dealt with this issue until now. All Graziano wants are answers and a solution to this problem, that is costing him a fortune. He shared his story Tuesday on 'First News with Keeler in the Morning.'

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