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Lawsuit filed against city of Folsom following copper pipe leaks

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The City of Folsom has received more than 2,000 reports of leaks from copper pipes, and a class action lawsuit has been filed in response. At the time we interviewed Rita Cook in July, she had three separate instances of plumbing leaks in the house she rents. “About a year ago we had our first pinhole leak and copper tubing here at Folsom,” Cook told KCRA 3 Investigates. “Minimal damage was done to the garage, easy enough to fix – a little spray and patch and it was done – we thought.” “Here in July, I got a call from my tenant that there was another leak. And unfortunately, it was here in the office bedroom, through the attic.” Then, during our interview with Cook, one of the copper pipes started to leak, again. “This is very disturbing for them,” Cook told KCRA 3 Investigates. “Every step we have to take takes time and they understand it, but they also care about it. This is their home.” The water keeps coming out but Cook’s pockets are getting dry. “I’m paying my share of my pocket, yes,” she said. “The other part is that I found out through the Facebook page that many people have decided to replace and remove the copper pipe from their house, which is very expensive.” As of December 2021, she and Cook neighbors have reported 2,337 cases of pinhole leaks in the city of Folsom. “I don’t know if there is a problem with the builder at the time, the copper pipe itself, the builder, the type of material? No one seems to know, and no one, of course, is taking responsibility at the moment,” Cook said. The city hired two outside companies to investigate the problem. One of them, HDR, an engineering design company, found that leaks could be associated with water corrosion in some areas, especially where the water had higher pH levels and more residual chlorine. The other company, Black & Veatch, echoed the same findings. Some of Folsom’s residents feel the city failed to act and have joined a class action lawsuit. The lawsuit was filed by Harold Malmquist, who, according to court documents, has racked up $ 79,000 in costs to replace the pipes and repair the property damage. against the city include; Corrosive, substandard water, elevated pH levels, and ignoring water quality guidelines. the city had fulfilled its supposed duties. “We are the victims here,” Cook told KCRA 3’s Brittany Johnson. “Something that we didn’t cause, obviously, so we have to rely on others to help get to the bottom of that.” KCRA 3 Investigates reached out to the city for comment. Via email, a spokesperson said: “The City of Folsom does not comment on litigation matters.” However, we were told that since October 2020, the city has added phosphate to its drinking water to prevent corrosion, which was recommended by both companies they investigated. The city believes this has contributed to a decrease in the number of reported cases.

The City of Folsom has received more than 2,000 reports of leaks from copper pipes, and a class action lawsuit has been filed in response.

At the time we interviewed Rita Cook in July, she had three cases of pipe leaks in the house she rents.

“About a year ago we had our first pinhole leak and copper tubing here at Folsom,” Cook told KCRA 3 Investigates. “Minimal damage was done to the garage, easy enough to fix – a little spray and patch it up and voila – we thought.”

“Here in July, I got a call from my tenant that there was another leak. And unfortunately, it was here in the office bedroom, through the attic.”

Then during our interview with Cook, one of the copper pipes started to leak again.

“This is very disturbing for them,” Cook told KCRA 3 Investigates. “Every step we have to take takes time and they understand it, but they also care about it. This is their home.”

The water keeps coming out, but Cook’s pockets are getting dry.

“I’m paying my share of my pocket, yes,” he said. “The other part is that I found out through the Facebook page that a lot of people have decided to replace and remove the copper pipe from their house, which is very expensive.”

As of December 2021, Cook and his neighbors have reported 2,337 cases of pinhole leaks in the city of Folsom.

“I don’t know if there was a problem with the builder at that time, the copper pipe itself, the builder, the type of material. No one seems to know, and no one, of course, is taking responsibility at the moment,” Cook said. .

The city hired two outside companies to investigate the problem.

One of them, HDR, an engineering design company, found that leaks could be associated with water corrosion in some areas, especially where the water had higher pH levels and more residual chlorine.

The other company, Black & Veatch, echoed the same findings.

Some of Folsom’s residents feel the city failed to act and have joined a class action lawsuit.

The lawsuit was filed by Harold Malmquist, who, according to court documents, has racked up $ 79,000 in costs to replace pipes and repair property damage.

The accusations against the city include; Corrosive, substandard water, elevated pH levels, and ignoring water quality guidelines.

The city filed a response to the lawsuit that said the plaintiff did not allege that the city violated any legal obligations and could not prove that the alleged leaks would not have occurred if the city had complied with the alleged obligations.

“We are the victims here,” Cook told KCRA 3’s Brittany Johnson. “Something that we didn’t cause, obviously, so we have to rely on others to help get to the bottom of that.”

KCRA 3 Investigates reached out to the city for comment. By email, a spokesperson said: “The City of Folsom does not comment on litigation matters.”

However, we were told that since October 2020, the city has added phosphate to its drinking water to prevent corrosion, which was recommended by both companies they investigated.

The city believes this has contributed to a decrease in the number of reported cases.

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