Findlay homeowner stuck with bill after water main break floods - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Findlay homeowner stuck with bill after water main break floods home

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Photos from Wrightington's home. Photos from Wrightington's home.
FINDLAY, OH (Toledo News Now) -

A water main break left a muddy mess in several homes in Findlay last week. Now at least one homeowner says he's been told he will have to pay for the damages.

The pre-dawn water main break occurred on Melrose Avenue on Thursday, July 17, sending water rushing down through the backyards of homes on Edith Avenue, which sits approximately four feet below Melrose.

"I happened to see all the water in our backyard. I couldn't even see any of our grass," said Jess Wrightington, who lives in the 700 block of Edith with his girlfriend.

Wrightington said more than a foot of water filled his basement, damaging many of his essential appliances.

"My furnace, washer, dryer, water heater, everything, just under mud," he said.

He says he also lost many personal items and electronics due to the flood damage, including a television, a receiver, an Xbox gaming system and tools he uses for work at a local heating and cooling business.

"We were prepared for rainwater or anything like that," he said. "We have a two-stage pump system, but this was a lot of water."

To make matters worse, after reaching out to his insurance provider, Grange Insurance, Wrightington was told the flood damage would not be covered because it is classified as "groundwater." Grange Insurance advised him he would have to contact the City of Findlay in order to get reimbursed.

According to Wrightington, one city official came by his home to see the damage. He was told the city would not be able to cover all of it, and he could expect to get a $250 check for his deductible, at best.

"I've already paid $1,200 just to replace my washer and dryer alone," said Wrightington.

City officials did not want to comment on Wrightington's claim, but Findlay Safety Service Director Paul Shmelzer did say the city plans to contact its insurance provider to further assess the damage at Wrightington's home.

At least four of his neighbors had similar damage in their basements.

While waiting for an answer from the city, Wrightington said he feels like he is left footing the bill for the city's mistake.

"Honestly, I just want my house put back together the way it was," he said. "I would just like to have my stuff."

Homeowners can learn more about what is and is not covered by the Ohio Department of Insurance, as well as shop for insurance that best suits their needs, here.

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