October 12

Plumbing Risks: Office Building Flood

International Eye Care in Memorial filed a lawsuit on March 4 in the Harris County District Court against Pearland’s Affordable Quality Plumbing and others, alleging violations of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act, breach of warranty and negligence.

The plaintiff says, in January of 2009, it hired Affordable to repair plumbing at its 926 N. Wilcrest Drive location in Memorial. On June 22, 2009, International Eye Care’s offices were flooded. According to the brief, Affordable’s failure to tie plumbing lines from the restrooms into the new PVC mainline caused the flood, incurring repair and cleanup costs of approximately $77,966.82.

International Eye Care is seeking all damages to which it is entitled, attorney’s fees and court costs.

In the plumbing business, water damage is among the most common risks for obvious reasons. In the story above, the hired plumber from Affordable Plumbing was hired by International Eye Care to do plumbing work in the restrooms. The plumber failed to tie plumbing lines from the restroom into the new PVC mainline. The result was the office flooding.

The flood/water damage caused by the plumber’s mistake amounted to $77,966.82, which is the amount (plus legal fees) that the Eye Care center is suing for.

As mentioned earlier, water damage is one of the most common sources of claims for plumbers; it is also one of the most expensive kinds of damage that can be caused by negligence outside of fires. When all is said and done, after a water break a lot of work is required for a full repair including:

  • Fixing the source of the water break
  • Replacing flooring and carpeting
  • Replacing any drywall that was affected to prevent mold growth
  • Repainting the new drywall
  • Any electrical components in the walls that were damaged they need to be replaced
  • Any other utility lines that were damaged need to be replaced
  • Any items belonging to the business/homeowner that were destroyed like computers, TVs, furniture, etc. will be on the bill as well

Any act of negligence on a plumber’s behalf has the potential to cause some very serious damage and generate a very large bill that they may be liable for. As one can see from the lawsuit above, the damage caused can be very costly. It is important in this regard to have an insurance policy in place that was built from the ground up with the needs of plumbing professionals in mind.

For more information on plumbing insurance and risk management, visit PlumbingPro.

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