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Old 07-09-2015, 11:40 PM   #15
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I am sure your lawyer will ask for proof that it was your sewage as the report indicates it was from an undisclosed source
Oh did your receipt from that campground indicate that they were providing you with sewer hookups?
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Old 07-10-2015, 12:42 AM   #16
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Your last statement bothers me. I don't see you in the clear yet at all. CG manager says Mr Winepress discharged that sewage. Mr Winepress says I discharged sewage down the pipe. FD says we showed up after the fact and there was sewage from an unknown source all over the ground behind Mr Winepress's MH. County says it looks like it's Winepress's fault, let's send him the bill.

And that's where it stands. Nothing is resolved, and according to the only official documents extant, the county has assigned responsibility to Winepress, and the bill is due.

I would not communicate personally any further. Have your lawyer do it, on his letterhead, in his language. Get pics of the CG sewer connection at your site, and of the cleanout protruding above ground behind your site. He can turn the situation around and put them on the defensive. That is imperative, and you, in all likelihood, won't accomplish that.

A sewage spill can be a serious business, and you're never more than a couple of steps away from having the EPA involved. And the last thing you need is to have a Fed on your back.


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You left out an important part of the fire department's statement:
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Originally Posted by Winepress View Post
Then the fire department stated the location of the discharge to be at the rear of my motorhome from an undisclosed underground source.
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Old 07-10-2015, 01:56 AM   #17
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You need to contact your insurance company and explain what's going on.

I suspect you are covered for this.

Let them hassle it out with whoever wants the money.
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Old 07-10-2015, 06:41 AM   #18
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Mr Winepress says I discharged sewage down the pipe. FD says we showed up after the fact and there was sewage from an unknown source all over the ground behind Mr Winepress's MH.

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Re-read the FD's report and note the words, Underground Source. OP cannot possibly be at fault if the CG's plumbing that runs underground failed to contain the effluent.
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Old 07-10-2015, 07:19 AM   #19
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Personally I woudl fight it.. YOu did the right thing.. Campground had a problem.

Though I am not a lawyer..I think you need one..one who is willing to go after the real responsible party (Just who that is I am not yet ready to speculate) and go after whomever sent you that bill when it was clearly NOT your fault.
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Old 07-10-2015, 07:35 AM   #20
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You need to contact your insurance company and explain what's going on.

I suspect you are covered for this.

Let them hassle it out with whoever wants the money.
I award Arch a quepie doll for this response, best one yet.

This should be covered under your liability insurance. You don't actually have to be responsible for the "accident" for them to step in, just the fact that someone is claiming you are will trigger the coverage.

Report it and forget it.

Good luck.
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Old 07-10-2015, 07:48 AM   #21
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The lawyer washing dishes next to me: "Threaten to bring the Health Department and/or environmental authorities into it, the bill will go away."


Probably, by the same avenue it arrived: the friend or family member who conspired with the person you contacted in the office to put the "rich transient's" name on the report...

Inadvertently, the Fire Department cleared you by citing it came from an "undisclosed underground source." The last time I checked, no motorhome comes with its own underground source. You called the office, that is a matter of record. It is improper that you were cited, and that the law should attest to that.
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Old 07-10-2015, 08:58 AM   #22
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I agree in that this is a 'B.S' bill and needs to be addressed so that the OP is cleared. On the other side, I am surprised that the 'charge' is so low! Having worked in/with HAZ-MAT a long time ago, the bill could easily been tens of thousands.
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Old 07-10-2015, 09:08 AM   #23
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Isn't this request for $$ a civil matter? Why not just ignore it until they make something out of it? Put the burden of proof on them?
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Old 07-10-2015, 01:51 PM   #24
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Clean up fee $3,200?

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You left out an important part of the fire department's statement:

"....Then the fire department stated the location of the discharge to be at the rear of my motorhome from an undisclosed underground source..."

Yea, Bob, I left out quite a few details. My intent was to summarize, not quote. You'll note that the FD statement avoids the inclusion of any fact not directly observed by the FD representatives. They did not observe sewage flowing from the cleanout pipe, so they do not know where it came from. This makes Winepress's statement an unsupported claim, which does not help him. He needs an attorney.


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Old 07-10-2015, 02:38 PM   #25
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Winepress, you've got all sorts of responses here, from 'file an insurance claim' to 'this is a joke'. But it is not a joke. I agree it sounds like it should be the CG's problem; sounds like a septic blockage downstream from that cleanout- which should not have been open. But what it sounds like, what so-called common sense would dictate, may not matter because this is already an event. As soon as the FD showed up on official business with hazmat suits it became an event; an event that eventually will land on a desk or in someone's report folder at EPA. And because EPA will eventually ask for a resolution, the county went proactive to cover their butt by issuing you a citation for improper discharge. From the bureaucrat's point of view it's all neatly wrapped up, except that you haven't paid the bill. This makes you the miscreant here, on paper. That's why you need your lawyer to handle this. You don't know how to tap dance through this minefield. He does.


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Old 07-10-2015, 03:04 PM   #26
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Lawyers cost more money. You've already paid your insurance company to help you. They have lawyers on retainer, should it come to that, and it would be paid off their dime.
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Old 07-10-2015, 03:23 PM   #27
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Lawyers cost more money. You've already paid your insurance company.....

Yeah! That's the ticket! Don't trust your own greedy lawyer that YOU would have to pay-- trust some unknown greedy lawyer that someone else pays for. He'll take good care of you.



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Old 07-10-2015, 07:21 PM   #28
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Winepress, you've got all sorts of responses here, from 'file an insurance claim' to 'this is a joke'. But it is not a joke. I agree it sounds like it should be the CG's problem; sounds like a septic blockage downstream from that cleanout- which should not have been open. But what it sounds like, what so-called common sense would dictate, may not matter because this is already an event. As soon as the FD showed up on official business with hazmat suits it became an event; an event that eventually will land on a desk or in someone's report folder at EPA. And because EPA will eventually ask for a resolution, the county went proactive to cover their butt by issuing you a citation for improper discharge. From the bureaucrat's point of view it's all neatly wrapped up, except that you haven't paid the bill. This makes you the miscreant here, on paper. That's why you need your lawyer to handle this. You don't know how to tap dance through this minefield. He does.


John & Diane, Fulltime since '12
2002 DSDP 40, FL, Cat 3126

First, thanks to everyone who has responded. John, I think you hit the nail. Lots of reports, lots of CYA, lots of "not me, must be you" people who monitor events, etc. etc.
I have since learned that willful sewer discharge is a criminal offense in San Bernardino county, CA. I guess I should be thankful that I haven't been arrested, but there is still time as the wheels of justice move slow.
Going to meet with our attorney on Monday and see what he advises. I will let y'all know what the next step is.
Again, thanks to everyone. Great bunch of RVers


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