Derby residents blame Sedgwick County for eroding property

Published: May. 29, 2019 at 8:54 PM CDT
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Friday, May 31, 2019

More Derby residents are concerned they will lose their properties after recent rains have led to severe erosion.

On Wednesday, we showed you video of a part of a pool shed that was on the verge of falling into Spring Creek in one resident's back yard.

Some neighbors say Sedgwick County is to blame after crews came in last year to removed trees from the creek.

Commissioner Jim Howell represents the district. He says the county removed nearly 500 truckloads of wood and debris from the creek. As a result, the City of Derby has less flooding even with the recent rains, but he agrees there has also been additional erosion.

"The question is was there a cause and effect?" He questions.

Howell says he's spent the last several weeks assessing storm damage in the area, and he agrees there is a problem.

"There's an outbuilding that's getting ready to fall into the creek. It's hard to watch that and I'm very sorry to the property owner and I'm very concerned that this is happening," says Howell. "I'm very empathetic to the situation, but the question is should we use tax dollars to step in and fix that?"

The commissioner says it would take around $100,00 to secure the bank for each property. He says he wants to advocate for his constituents, but under the state law, he says, the country isn't required to do anything.


Wednesday, May 29, 2019

A Derby homeowner expresses concern as eroded ground from recent flooding puts her pool shed in danger of falling into Spring Creek.

As of Wednesday afternoon, part of the shed hung off the side of the ground, hanging above the creek below. The homeowner, Christina Chronister, says she's already lost about 20 feet of property on which the shed used to sit because of erosion from all the recent rain.

Chronister shared photos that show how full the creek was after heavy rain on May 8. Water rose up to the shed. The water in Spring Creek has since receded, but several trees on the property are now in the creek, along with parts of Chronister's fence.

She says it's been devastating to watch.

"The landscape is changing daily. It's stressful and (I'm) worried how close and how much more ground will be lost," Chronister says. "And every time the forecast of rain, you get quite nervous and scared."

Chronister says her family is in contact with Sedgwick County to get help and get the trees taken out of the creek. She says her neighbor also lost some of their property and trees due to the erosion.

HAPPENING NOW: A shed behind a Derby family's home is on the verge of falling into Spring Creek after the land it sits on has started to erode. #kwch12 #storm12

Posted by KWCH 12 Eyewitness News on Wednesday, May 29, 2019