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Opelousas family looking for answers to their drainage issues

Posted at 10:11 PM, Nov 07, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-08 00:28:46-05

An Opelousas family wants answers about the standing water in their backyard and in front of their home when it rains. The family’s home is on West Vine Street.

With the rain on Wednesday, they saw the flooding problem. They also say they saw what they call an unfamiliar sight: drainage work. Toni Darbonne says she just wants answers.

“We’ve been facing the flooding problem on Vine Street for quite some time. I actually had to buy a pump to pump the water out of my yard,” Darbonne said.

When it rains heavily, it typically floods at the Darbonne house, even though they live right next to a coulee. Vine Street is a state highway. KATC reached out to the Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD), and a spokesperson tells us the drainage on the street was cleared last year. They also say they have a partnership with the city for drainage work.

“I’ve been dealing with this for a few years, and no one wants to do nothing. I’ve been to the mayor, the city and everyone else, and they don’t want to take care of it,” Darbonne said.

While out on Vine Street, KATC spotted Opelousas Chief Administrative Officer Rod Sias helping clear out drains.

“I receive all the work orders, and we haven’t gotten a work order from her. I guarantee you; I look at every last work order in the city. I take them. I write them myself. If there’s an issue, we will address it, but I haven’t seen any,” Sias said.

Darbonne said she doesn’t get any relief unless she gets a neighbor to help shovel the debris from the drain in front of her home.

“I’ve got to wait for the water to stop flowing, and then when I do, I can start pumping,” she said.