NFL legend Joe Montana joined a group of fed-up San Francisco homeowners in suing the city after sewage-contaminated rainwater leaked into expensive homes earlier this year.
Nearly 60 plaintiffs said the city failed to properly repair sewerage systems linked to previous flooding in the posh area before a combination of atmospheric flow and bomb cyclone inundated the area, killing two people on New Year’s Day.
“The portion of this system that runs through the marina is obsolete and has been neglected and poorly maintained by the City and County of San Francisco,” the lawsuit states obtained from the San Francisco Chronicle.
“As a result, the system regularly overloads, overflows, and inundates plaintiffs’ properties and neighborhoods with untreated sewage and contaminated water.”
San Francisco residents and advocacy groups have been urging the city to address the aging sewer system over the past two years after it was drained in low-lying areas, including the neighborhood where soccer superstar and former 49ers quarterback Montana lived Home is, floods came again and again.
Average home prices in the enclave are $2.6 million. according to broker.
The flooding issue was compounded by the closure of a city spout in 2021, allowing excess water to flow into the bay instead of escaping through manholes onto the street, the lawsuit says.
As the violent storm swept across the Bay Area on New Year’s Eve, more than 18.6 million gallons of untreated or partially treated wastewater flowed from the city’s sewage system onto city streets, of which just 2.3 million gallons, according to San Francisco Regional data Records from the Water Quality Control Board obtained by the Chronicle entered the bay.
The dirty water “flowed in and around plaintiffs’ properties, permeating floors, walls and floors and depositing heavily contaminated and toxic feces and other raw sewage in and around plaintiffs’ homes.”
Homeowners attempted to sue the city for damages, but were denied, the lawsuit says.
However, San Francisco claims the catastrophic flooding was caused by “almost unprecedented” heavy rainfall and not by the city’s oversight.
“It was the strongest storm to hit San Francisco in more than 170 years,” Jen Kwart, spokeswoman for the district attorney’s office, said in a statement.
“The storm, and not the city’s infrastructure, was responsible for the widespread flooding across the city. We are reviewing the complaint and will respond in court.”