Woman living in apartment flooded by sewer backup while waiting for repairs

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COMMERCE CITY, Colo. -- A woman's apartment in Commerce City is nearly unlivable after a sewage backup last month. For more than four weeks, Kim Matchie said she lived in deplorable conditions, while her landlord figured out a solution.

"It smelled so bad," Matchie said.  "Sewer water, portable toilet and wet dog is how I explained it.  I stayed in it for days."

Matchie's apartment flooded May 9.  It took five days for the landlord to rip out wet, moldy carpet and drywall.

Nearly a month later, a bedroom still smells and work to the unit isn't finished.

"It was like a huge sponge.  It smelled awful," Matchie said.

The apartments are managed by Access Housing, a nonprofit group that helps low-income and homeless families. Access Housing manages more than two dozen units.

"In hindsight, we probably should have figured out a way to try to do it quicker," said Bill Reinke, Access Housing executive director.  "She will be made whole.  That is our intention. That's what we're working on."

Reinke said Access Housing paid for Matchie to stay in a hotel for two nights but couldn't afford to keep her there longer.  The nonprofit group will offer Matchie some compensation. It will start with replacing damaged furniture.

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