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Utah family says faulty water line repair destroyed their basement

Posted at 9:22 PM, May 20, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-21 13:09:23-04

SOUTH WEBER, Utah – A family says the home they recently purchased suffered serious damage when a water line broke Friday morning.

Kendra Pierce and her husband Danny Lyman moved into the home in October of 2017.

Recently, they noticed a patch of grass in their backyard filled with water.

They claim Thursday, the South Weber City Secondary Water District sent a contractor to fix the issue.

“They got a backhoe in, they dug up the ground and everything and decided it was the secondary pipe that had broken or split,” Kendra said.

After the repairs were made, Kendra and Danny thought the problem was solved.

A few hours later, on Friday morning, the couple was startled as they were enjoying their morning coffee.

“You could hear it and it sounded like a tidal wave,” Kendra said of the noise made by the bursting pipe.

She went downstairs to see what caused the noise and couldn’t believe what she encountered.

“I was in cold water this deep; I felt like I was on the Titanic,” Kendra said.

Water and mud were shooting into the air and flooding the lower level of the home, ruining scores of irreplaceable items.

“My grandmother’s sewing machine, and photo albums,” Kendra answered when asked what was destroyed. “Everything we had to remember people by is gone.”

Now a gaping hole about 6-feet wide and 8-feet deep dominates the landscape of the backyard.

A pile of ruined furniture, doors and household items sits in the yard’s other corner.

Kendra and Danny are searching for answers. They say the Weber City Secondary Water District shut off the water line.

The contractor has not answered the several calls Kendra has placed since the pipe burst.

The couple hopes someone steps up to take responsibility for the damage done to the house.

“It’s just been so much stress and so little help and nobody is saying, ‘This is our fault, don’t worry about it,’” Kendra said.

Even if the property and the water line are repaired, Kendra and her husband have reservations about living on the property.

“I don’t know if we can still live here,” Kendra said. “There is a huge pipe outside that might explode at any time.”

The couple bought the house with the hope of retiring in it.

“This was our dream home,” Kendra said.

Now they wonder what will happen next.

Monday morning a contractor for South Weber Secondary Water District showed up at the Pierce's home with a backhoe, they said they were there to fix the original pipe problem.

Kendra refused to let them on property. She said at that point an official with the water district claimed they had easement rights and said they would tear down the fence if necessary to gain access.

The situation escalated and Davis County Sheriff's arrived to keep the peace. Once things calmed down, the crew was allowed to access the property.

The Pierce's said the contractor is attempting to repair the pipe, while Kendra and her husband continue to clean up the mess in their basement.

Nonetheless, the Pierce's said they still don't know who will be picking up the tab on all of this.