Sewer Hazards

There are various things residents can do to prevent hazards within their private sewer system. This section will identify those hazards and give prevention tips.

Property owners are responsible for their entire lateral, including both upper and lower lateral reaches. The upper lateral is the portion from the building structure to property line and the lower lateral from property line to the public sewer.

A list of approved bonded sewer contractors who are authorized to work in public right-of-way in Los Angeles can be found here.

tree roots

About 50% of all sewer backups and overflows in the City are caused by tree roots. Not only do sewer lines on private property get clogged, but the roots can grow into the City’s sewers causing spills from those pipes as well.

Fats, Oil, and Grease

Fats, oils and grease often stick to the insides of sewer pipes when washed into kitchen plumbing systems. This can block pipes and cause spills that back up into the kitchen or overflow on private property and in the streets, causing property damage, environmental problems, and other health hazards.