Raw sewage backs up into police locker room following heavy rains

NORTHEAST PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- In the basement of an aging building on the 2800 block of Levick Street is where officers stationed at the 2nd and 15th police districts in Philadelphia begin and end their day, changing in and out of uniform.

According to the Fraternal Order of Police, heavy rainwater mixed with sewage backed up into the locker rooms there overnight on Sunday.

"We did a physical walk-through of the basement," said Roosevelt Poplar, Vice President, Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 5. "We saw from the drains the sewage, we saw raw sewage coming up, black dirt coming up through the mainline."

At one point Monday morning Action News did see custodial staff bringing a floor cleaning machine. That was shortly after the FOP Vice President received notice that a cleaning crew was coming out to sanitize the basement.

Late Monday afternoon the city said its contractor Team Clean did indeed clean up remaining water and used a non-bleach cleaner.

Team Clean assured us it would sanitize and decontaminate the locker room of any materials from the sewage.

Poplar says this sort of problem has occurred often over the last decade.

The city said there is a plan to move the 2nd district to a new facility while this building would be completely rehabbed and modernized for the 15th district.

The FOP says that plan has been in the pipeline for a while.

"Every time a new regime comes in, they come out, take pictures, make diagrams then two years go by and nothing happens," said Poplar. "And then another regime comes in and does the same thing. This is what we have been going through for the last five years."

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