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Punta Gorda couple calls FOX 4 after FP&L contractor flooded home with sewage

Dan and Dawn Mooney said neither FP&L nor the contractor initially accepted responsibility for crushing a sewer line causing sewage to back up in their rental property.
Posted at 11:29 PM, Jun 27, 2024

PUNTA GORDA, Fla. — A Punta Gorda couple said sewage backups flooded their rental property after a Florida Power & Light Company contractor broke their sewage line during an installation project.

Dan and Dawn Mooney own a rental property in the Deep Creek neighborhood. They told Fox 4’s Charlotte County Community Correspondent Alex Orenczuk in late May and early June, sewage back ups caused thousands of dollars in damage to their home.

Dan & Dawn Mooney
Dan & Dawn Mooney stand in front of the Punta Gorda rental property, which was damage during sewage backups.

“We got a call from our tenants saying that sewage was backing up through the house,” said Dan Mooney. “We had a plumbing company come and snake the line out. They were able to get it opened up but a couple days later it clogged up again.”

After the second back up, a local plumbing company was able to use a camera to locate and repair the problem, which was a destroyed sewage pipe in the same area that Restore It All, Inc, a Fort Lauderdale based FPL contractor had installed an electrical wire.

Broken sewer line
Mooney's broken sewer line was uncovered by a local plumbing company.

“They found the blockage, where the pipe had been broken, the boring company had bored through and broken the line,” said Mooney.

Plumber report
A description of work from a plumbing company that fixed Mooney's broken sewer line.

Mooney told Orenczuk that neither FPL nor Restore It All, Inc was inclined to take responsibility, or pay for the thousands of dollars in damages that the back ups had caused.

“Inside the home, sewage water backed up and it got the carpets, laminate floors, bathroom vanities and everything and spread out,” said Mooney. “We’re looking at close to $30,000 or more in damages.”

Carpet sewage damage
Sewage backups forced the Mooney's to remove carpet and laminate flooring in sections of the rental property.

Documents show that Mooney attempted to contact FPL and Restore It All, Inc to try and rectify the situation, but was unsuccessful.

“We talked to FPL and they gave us a claim number, and followed through with an email a couple days later and said they are not responsible, it's the subcontractor’s responsibility and that is Restore It All, Inc,” said Mooney. “So we made attempts to get ahold of them and in turn they returned phone calls back to us and said it's not their responsibility and they are blaming it on the county.”

Orenczuk contacted FPL about Mooney’s situation, and was told the third party contractor, Restore It All, Inc was responsible for the damage.

“We are aware of the situation in Punta Gorda in which a third-party contractor struck a sewer line working on a Florida Power & Light Company project. FPL takes all claims very seriously and carefully investigates the specifics of each case. Because this incident involved a contractor performing work for FPL, we have directed customers who contacted us about a claim to the contractor and its insurance company.”
Chris Curtland, FPL Spokesman.

Orenczuk spoke with Gabriel Rivera, Restore It All, Inc’s Vice President who said the company would initiate an investigation, and would pay for expenses if it is at fault.

“This just came onto my desk, so we will look into this and get all the facts together and address it,” said Rivera. “If we have to pay, if it’s found that it was our fault we’re going to cover all the expenses.”

Rivera could not give an exact timeline on when an investigation would be completed on Mooney’s complaint, but said it would be as soon as possible.

“I would like to see if they step up and take responsibility and make good on these repairs,” said Mooney.