Morrow County family: Man-made pond flooding their driveway, want something done about it

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A Morrow County family reached out to 6 On Your Side for help after they say a man-made pond next door has flooded their driveway. (WSYX/WTTE)

MORROW COUNTY, Ohio (WSYX/WTTE) -- A Morrow County family reached out to 6 On Your Side for help after they say a man-made pond next door has flooded their driveway.

Frank and Veronica Adkins say they can’t use their driveway and won’t let their grandchildren near in fear they may get hurt or worse.

The pond owner says he has seen the couple’s watery driveway and can’t say for sure his pond is the culprit. The Adkins' are adamant the pond is the reason for the constant flooding.

6 On Your Side visited the Adkins' home where they showed us why they can’t leave their home in a hurry.

The couple keeps mud boots and old sneakers by the door to put on before they leave so they don’t ruin their good shoes. Their driveway has ankle deep water in some spots and it’s up to mid-calf in others.

“Last year, it never crossed our driveway. This way, it’s been up into our front yard,” said Veronica Adkins.

The Adkins' say they worry about the safety of their grandchildren.

“They can drown in that kind of water,” said Veronica Adkins.

The Adkins say the flooding is coming from a man-made pond right next door.

“We can’t park in the driveway. We have to park off the driveway. Just carrying the babies in and out, the groceries in and out, it’s awful,” said Veronica Adkins.

It’s so bad, the Adkins' had to create a plywood path for family and friends to stay dry as they walk to the front door.

The couple remembers watching the former property owner dig the pond eight years ago.

“Part of the dam on my side gave way, which allowed the water to start seeping over,” said Frank Adkins.

The Adkins' say they put in a 6-inch drain tile a year after the pond went in.

Two years later, Frank says he dug a trench on his property. Then a few weeks ago, the Adkins' say they had a bigger trench scooped out.

“At first, it wasn’t too bad. It would fill up and drain off in about two days, but it got worse as the opening got worse. At this point, now it doesn’t drain,” said Frank Adkins.

The Adkins' say their breaking point came this year.

“One of our daughters was carrying a baby out to the car, slipped in the mud and fell with the baby,” said Veronica Adkins.

Frank Adkins walked up onto the dam with a camera. He showed us what appears to be a crack in the soil with water flowing toward his property.

The Adkins' say it’s about time the current owner do something about it.

“Our property is a hot mess out there. If the water would just stop, fill the pond in, stop the water however, I don’t care,” said Veronica Adkins.

6 On Your Side reached out to the man who owns the property next door, which he rents out.

He says he’s seen the water in the driveway, but didn’t think it had to do with his pond. He told us when the weather breaks, he’ll put drains in.

The Adkins' say he told their son the same thing three years ago and nothing has been done.

“This is all we have. We work hard for it. For someone else to take advantage of us, that’s what it is, and doesn’t even have the decency to stop and say 'hey,can we fix something?'" said Veronica Adkins.

After 6 On Your Side spoke with the property owner, the Adkins' say he came to their door and apologized and told them he hired someone to fix it when the weather is better.

The Adkins' say they’ve been good neighbors and they’d like the favor returned.

“We’re waiting on him to do the right thing and we would even help do the right thing. We just want it stopped,” said Veronica Adkins.

6 On Your Side did contact the Morrow County Soil and Water Department about man-made ponds.

We’re told you can't disrupt the natural flow of water and you can’t back up water onto a neighbor’s property. If that is the case for the Adkins, the property owner could be responsible for damage.

The Adkins' say hiring a lawyer could be the next step if the property owner doesn’t keep his word. But they don’t want to go that route at this point.