Baton Rouge apartment residents fed up with sewage backups, maintenance woes
BATON ROUGE - At Serenity Apartments on N. Ardenwood Drive, the scene is anything but serene for those living there. A stench lingers and raw sewage can be seen on the sidewalks.
"Nobody should have to walk out of their door and that's the first thing you see," resident Kendesh Johnson said.
The sewage isn't confined to one spot. It can be found in several areas around the complex.
"This is something that we see every day," resident Terry Jones said. "Seven days a week."
Residents say the sewage has been left unaddressed for some time.
"I want to say it's been about a month, almost two months now," Johnson said. "Kids are walking through this when they get on the bus and off the bus, that's not safe."
The sewage backups aren't the only problems residents have been trying to get fixed.
"They just came and fixed my hot water heater today and I've been back here almost five months," Johnson said. "I haven't had hot water."
Tuesday afternoon, WBRZ went to the front office to ask management about the sewage mess and other maintenance complaints. A reporter was told to come back in the morning.
That response is similar to what residents have been told when reporting problems.
"The first response is 'we're going to check on it,'" Jones said. "The second response, 'we're going to check on it.'
The third response, 'we're going to check on it.' 'We're going to check on it' is the response they always give us.
"They really don't do anything," Johnson said. “You can go and let them know what's going on, but it's like you've got to go back maybe three, four, five, six, seven, eight times for them to get something going."
From apartment to apartment, residents share one sentiment: frustration.
"Knowing that you wake up every morning to make a living for yourself and you have to come back to a condition of living like this is not good at all," Jones said.
"This is where we live, this is where we pay rent," Johnson said. "You know you want to come outside. You don't want to see that, it's like living next to a landfill."
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