European cities face problems of sewerage and storm water systems wearing out, due to a combination of ageing infrastructure and increased urbanization. Its rehabilitation urges. This paper deals with disturbances on individuals' quality of life due to failures or rehabilitation works. It presents the results of a case-study which comprehends two target-areas: Nantes metropolis in France, and two municipalities of Lisbon metropolis in Portugal. On both areas a questionnaire was applied to a sample of target-populations.
This research results indicate that sewer failures and rehabilitation works are events that induce on disturbances especially in what concerns to the areas of housing and nearby surroundings. Nevertheless, being distinct type of situations, disturbances are lived in different ways as well as differently tolerated. This study also showed that those critical events may provoke, under certain circumstances, trust erosion of costumers towards sewerage utility. The last section aims at providing guidelines that could help local operators to set up a “consumer policy” especially in what concerns to sewer failures and rehabilitation works.