Lawyer help: Blocked creek bottom flooding my property


Senior Member
In Mountrie area. I need a lawyer that can help me with a neighbor that has dammed up a creek with a road backing up water onto my property.

I have a creek that runs through my property. In the past when it rained hard we would have water standing for a few days. But during hunting season we could drive the truck across the creek bottom to the back of the property. Then a few years back we started having standing water issues, and now there is water standing to the point we have algae growing.

There was a big flood that washed out the neighbors road. There was a culvert that allowed the water to drain off my property. They rebuilt the road and built it much higher with no culvert

I have talked with the owners and they won't do anything because they don't want more water on their property. I talked with the city, they went out but since nothing had been done in the past few month they could not do anything about it. Talked to DNR and they have no authority and sent me to the army corp of engineers. Army corp guy is doing NOTHING. I have emailed them 6-8 times. Last emal the guy told me that he is having problems contacting them to get on the property. I gave him the website to the property owner, the owners cell phone number, owners email, and gave him permission to get access through my property where he can clearly see the road backing up the water onto my property.

These guys have pretty deep pockets. Have paid hunts on their property. Worked with the armycorp a few years back (maybe the same guy that I am trying to get to help me), so me not hunting my property is not hurting them in any way. Is there a way to use their established $/day to hunt to file a suit for 3yr @ $/day. We haven't been able to get on the property to mow it, put in food plots, or even hunt the back of the property without wading thru water/mud.

thx to any that can help
Is this dam located on a forest road?

Gone Fishin

Senior Member
Thx to all for feedback. There is NO blue line running across the property so it maybe my nomenclature is wrong, and I don't know how that affects things (flood plain, not creek??). My property is left of bridge (Bridge), here is the road where the culvert was (Culvert Road). Water flowed north to south through the culvert to drain water from my property towards the river.

Here is stand in middle of property. We drove back here (2 wheel drive in truck) every hunting season until a few years ago photo link. The county came in every year and cleared food plot with a dozer. Here is the road today that we used and the dozer used to get to the back of the property photo link today. The county hasn't been able to clear the plots for several years now. The property 100% would be wet when the river south of the property was out of the banks. Then the property would dry up when the river went down. It doesn't dry up any more. In the bridge map link above there is water under that bridge, but if you go south 1/2 mile the river (little river ) is very high during this time.

Eventually there will be a flood that will washout their road. The owner told me over the phone that the road kept washing out so they had to build it up really high. That is why we went from dry, to some water, to now standing water.


Eventually there will be a flood that will washout their road. The owner told me over the phone that the road kept washing out so they had to build it up really high. That is why we went from dry, to some water, to now standing water.

Did you ask him why he didn't put in 1 or 2 pipes to allow water to flow through under the road?!?!

Barring getting anywhere with officials and your neighbor, are you able to trench from the standing water toward the natural drain toward the river and be done with it? Even if it is out of your pocket?


Senior Member
I'm not a Lawyer but I assume you can sue him in Civil court, Ask for damages and retribution.
I believe you can ask for a jury too, so people may side with you.

Last resort, a truck load of Mexicans a few shovels and a case or 2 of beer and dig a new drainage ditch.


2023 TURKEY CHALLENGE 1st place Team
Cut some trees by the bridge and let nature do the rest to help wash it out faster


Senior Member
Heres a guide to determining state waters. Its typicially used by engineers, Local Issuing Authoritys ( LIAs are govt depts that issue permits) and environmental consultants. The DNR EPD also use the same guidelines. Just be careful what you wish for. Once a blue line/ wetlands determination has been made by local government all requirements apply and may restrict what you can do on your own property including " buffer disturbance etc. etc. As well as complying with permit requirements.

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Gone Fishin

Senior Member
Can't dig a drain to the river, because there was an old sand mine between my place and the river.


Retired civil engineer here and I spent my career trying to prevent problems such as this. I would do the hydraulic modeling of bridges and culverts so our roadway and bridge guys would not get landowners upstream of our project location upset and flooded.
Disclaimer: Since I am retired I do not maintain a current license to practice professional engineering, nor do I have professional liability insurance. The opinions and findings expressed here are just worth exactly what is being paid for them: nothing. I can't help you in a court of law with any litigation and I can't express a "professional" opinion. I am just offering a few observations and avenues that I would pursue if I were in a similar situation.
Having said that, I certainly like to stir the pot when appropriate, and I think you have a good case to present that the value of your property has been lowered because of the actions of someone else. You probably want to find a real estate attorney, since this gets into areas that general attorney may not have expertise and experience.
Using the link you provided for the bridge location, I was able to track down where your property is located. There is a very broad floodplain for the Little River that extends for probably close to a mile across. The bridge that you linked to acts a relief structure during the 100-year flood event (which is the standard flood for modeling purposes) and was probably sized by the designer to provide a "safety" for the actual bridge crossing the Little River during a flood event. The county public works department may be interested that the relief structure will probably not work as designed during a flooding event, which will present an additional risk that the bridge over the Little River might fail. County Public Works (or whoever handles roads and bridges) may be someone else you can get involved to get this problem taken care of.
I checked the USGS StreamStats to see if there is a stream of any kind passing though the location of the roadway the other landowner built, and there doesn't appear to be a "blue line" that would be helpful for your case. However, all is not lost.
The Georgia EPD also has a registry of dams and there are certain criteria that must be met for a dam to fall under the safe dams program. They are: A} The dam is over 25 feet high, which I don't think would apply. That area is so flat a 25 foot dam would really not be appropriate from an engineer perspective. Or B} is an impoundment of 100 acre-feet of water. That sounds like a lot, but really isn't that hard to achieve. If 100 acres is impacted and it has an average depth of 1 foot, you are there. It is incumbent upon the other guy to know what he is doing and have an engineer-of-record design the dam. I would seriously doubt that was the case. If you Google search "Georgia EPD Safe Dams Program" it will take you right to the EPD site with contact information. I would not be afraid to contact the guy at the state level to look into your situation; that is what we pay taxes for so we may as well get something.
You can contact me via PM if you need any additional "opinions" or for me to show you where I got the flood maps and stream info. I hope this gets resolved in you favor; it appears the other landowner just does stuff without any regard for his neighbors. A county engineer once told me regarding site development (and the EPD inspections and regulations) that "You can make as big a mess on your property as you want, as long as none of it ever leaves your property." I think in this case the other guy has made a mess and it has managed to leave his property.


Purveyor Of Fine Spirits
Send Nic a private message.Ask him who his lawyer friend is.
I am Nick's lawyer friend. There are all kinds of agencies and regulations, both State and Federal, that apply to this issue. Both the state and the feds have interests in wetlands and depending on the soil type, etc... most natural wet areas can be impacted by these regulations. In Moultrie you might want to give John Forehand a call, his practice covers regulatory law. I have been involved in litigation like this years ago up in Lee Co. (involving a road and culvert which caused flooding) and it can be rather drawn out and expensive. The first thing that needs to be done is see what permits they obtained, and John should be able to do that.