Denver woman says city contractor did nearly $50,000 damage to home

Problem Solvers
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DENVER - A broken window, busted sprinkler and sewer systems, and a sinking foundation are just some of the damages a Denver woman said a city-contracted construction company caused to her home.

The company, Mortenson Construction, disagrees, so homeowner Teri Ransom reached out to the FOX31 Problem Solvers for help.

The problem started last year, when Denver Public Works contracted with Mortenson to replace a sewer line to prevent flooding.

Ransom told FOX31 that crews spent nearly five months in front of her home on Missouri Avenue, just south of Cherry Creek.

"There were little bulldozers moving equipment, (a) giant 40-ton pounding excavator digging dirt, filling dirt," Ransom said, as she looked at the numerous pictures she took. "It was like living inside of a bell that somebody had hit with a hammer. It was unbelievable because it was constant."

The construction project was also potentially destructive.

Mortenson’s own equipment that tests for how much vibration the heavy machinery puts off found the crews went above the federal levels for what can potentially damage homes.

Ransom said those same vibrations caused nearly $47,000 in damage to her home.

"The worst part is the sewers, because now I have to pay attention to what I do, and when I do it and how I do it, because the sewers won’t necessarily accommodate what they’re supposed to take care of," Ransom said.

She has had a private engineering firm agree all the damage is from the vibrations. However, Ransom told the Problem Solvers that Mortenson told her it isn’t responsible and that that it is only willing to pay for some of the costs.

In a statement, Mortenson Senior Vice President Maja Rosenquist told the Problem Solvers:

“We empathize with the time it has taken to resolve Ms. Ransom’s claim and we are working with our insurance carrier to reach a mutually-agreeable solution. The insurance carrier was previously at Ms. Ransom’s home to assess her initial claim, and they are currently working to schedule an even more technical evaluation of Ms. Ransom’s home to ensure the issues presented in her revised submission are addressed. Mortenson is committed to doing the right thing, and our hope is that this process can occur soon and that the matter can be resolved quickly thereafter.”

The Problem Solvers reached out to Denver Public Works about this issue and were told the city doesn't have any liability because a contractor was doing the work.

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