Responding to Street & Basement Flooding

street flood

Flooded Streets

During extremely heavy downpours the main barrels or trunk lines become filled to capacity thus causing flooding (fortunately these types of rainfalls are uncommon).  If you experience a flooded street during working hours (Monday - Friday, 7:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.) please contact the Department of Public Service at (248) 246-3300 and we will dispatch a worker.  As a general rule, street water is not taken care of after hours, unless it is excessive.  Usually the cause of streets flooding is debris on top of the sewer grate, residents can assist the City greatly by removing any debris and not blowing grass clippings into the street.  Thank you.

Projects For Relief From Flooded Basements

The City of Royal Oak is a member of the formerly named Twelve Town Drainage Enhancement Program, now called George W. Kuhn Retention Treatment Basin (in honor of the late former Oakland County Drain Commissioner) which was expanded in 2006 to meet new environmental regulation protocols. The program is designed to substantially decrease the potential of flooded basements.

Why Does Flooding In Basements Occur?

There are several reasons that you may experience basement water.  Tree roots, disposable diapers, grease and other materials are key contributors to obstructing the flow of a residents cleanout. When these obstructions occur in your sewer service line it prevents not only the water that is used internally throughout the house from flowing to the City's main sewer but also prevents the water that has built up below your basement floor and around the basement walls (usually called weeping tile) from flowing freely to the main sewer as well. The water will then try to equalize the pressure and seek its own level by coming through cracks in the walls, cracks in the floor, the floor/wall seam, and most commonly, up through the floor drains.

The City Will Respond To Flooding In The Home

When you experience any of these signs please contact the Department of Public Service immediately during regular working hours (Monday - Friday, 7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.) at (248) 246-3300 and the Police Department Non-Emergency anytime thereafter at (248) 246-3500. The Police Department will dispatch a Sewer Representative to respond to your emergency. It is important that the City is notified and able to investigate the problem at the time the event is taking place. If the problem exists in the City main sewer line a crew will be dispatched immediately to clear the line and return during regular working hours to thoroughly clean the line. If the problem is determined to be in the property owner's sewer service line the homeowner will be advised that they may want to contact either a plumber to clean the line and/or a sewer cleaning company.  Please note: the City is only responsible for the city main line, the resident is responsible for their sewer clean out up to and including the sewer connection.

Cleaning Up After

The Michigan Municipal Risk Management Authority Department of Public Works Advisory Committee has drafted procedures on cleaning and sanitizing after you have experienced a flood or sewage in your basement. View the procedures in the Cleaning Up the Mess After Basement Flooding section.