Many people are understandably unsure of the difference between a sewer and a drain - and who is responsible when things go wrong. The easiest way to explain is as follows:
- A drain is a pipe serving one property. The owner of the property is responsible for maintaining the drains.
- A sewer is a pipe serving more than one property.
In Wigan Borough, United Utilities plc (External link) are responsible for maintaining public sewers. These are usually the main sewers that lie under the road. Problems caused by the public sewerage system can be reported by calling United Utilities on 08456 020406, or by writing to the address below.
In most cases, pipes with a diameter of less than 225mm (9 inches) in gardens are private sewers. The responsibility for maintenance of these lies with the owners of the properties they serve, whether they are privately owned or Council housing.
The exception is where properties have been built before 1st October 1937. In most of these cases the sewers count as public sewers. Very often these are terraced properties.
Preliminary Flood Risk Assessment 2011
Wigan’s Preliminary Flood Risk Assessment (PFRA) was approved by the Economy, Environment, Culture and Housing Scrutiny Committee on 8 June 2011. A copy of the full document can be viewed below.
All Lead Local Flood Authorities (LLFA) are required to prepare a PFRA to meet the requirements of the 2009 Flood Risk regulations. The PFRA is a high level screening exercise to determine whether there is a local flood risk within the LLFA area based on historic and potential future flood risk. Local flood risk includes that arising from surface water, groundwater, ordinary watercourses and canals. It does not include flooding from main rivers as that is the responsibility of the Environment Agency under the regulations. The 2009 flood risk regulations were put in place by the government to ensure compliance with the EU Floods Directive.