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Springfield family seeks SUB help after water main break floods home

Rod and Emily Peterson said they woke up late last Tuesday night to what sounded like a river pouring into the foundation of their Thurston Hills home.

Posted: Sep. 24, 2018 6:27 PM
Updated: Sep. 24, 2018 6:38 PM

SPRINGFIELD, Ore. -- A Springfield family said their home is destroyed after a water main erupted in Thurston last week. Now, they’re pleading for help from the Springfield Utility Board.

Rod and Emily Peterson said they woke up late last Tuesday night to what sounded like a river pouring into the foundation of their Thurston Hills home.

“(Emily) wakes me up frantically screaming our house is going to float away, oh my god, what are we going to do?” Rod said.

A water main that runs below their street broke right in front of their house that day.

They said water flooded their property, destroying the foundation in the process.

Emily said as a result, doors no longer lock properly and the house is lop-sided.

"The garage floor is actually apart from the wall. I mean there's a huge, noticeable gap,” Emily said. “We're walking down the hall to our garage, and it's like being so slopped down. It's like the house of mystery in the Thurston Hills. I should start charging admission."

The Petersons said they were in the process of fixing up the house to sell it. They said the broken water main put a hole quite literally in those plans.

"Our goal was to sell this house,” Rod said. “We've been paying on it for 10 years to sell it and upgrade for a bigger house for our kids.”

The Springfield Utility Board fixed the water main, but the family said they're still waiting to hear whether SUB will help them financially.

The Petersons said they were told the damages could cost over $100,000, a cost they said they cannot afford.

"It's basically going to be another house payment. You know, paying off that debt. I mean, what do you do? Do you just walk away from your mortgage and let the bank repo it and start all over? I don't know,” Rod said.

Emily Peterson said it makes her sick to come home to a house that's broken.

"It's a house that I love. It's a house that my husband and I worked our butt off to get. We're constantly trying to do things to make it nicer. We have a lot of pride in our home, and now it almost feels like it's all for nothing,” Emily said.

The Petersons believe their homeowners insurance may not cover the cost because the foundation is affected.

They said right now, it's in SUB’s hands to work it out.

KEZI 9 News reached out to SUB, and they said the insurance investigation is ongoing, and if they are found liable for the water main break, they expect to provide aid for repairs.

They also said if the main broke for reasons beyond their control, then it's up to the homeowners to work it out with their insurance.

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