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Homeowners face clean-up and insurance nightmare after water main break forces water into homes

MARYLAND HEIGHTS, MO – A watermain break caused sewer water to backup into dozens of Maryland Heights homes.

Monday morning over 20 residents in the Brookside neighborhood woke up to find about a foot of sewage water in their basements.

According to Missouri American Water Spokesperson Brian Russell, there was a water main break on the street and that water can back up into storm drains and then people’s home.

Neighbors have spent the past two days throwing their entire basements into dumpsters and don’t exactly know what to do next.

Russell said Missouri American Water is responsible for cleaning up the mess but not the damages unless they are liable for the break.

“It’s understood that water mains will break from time to time and there is no rhyme or reason to it you can’t predict when or where, so it is just kind of understood with insurance companies and state regulators that unless we do something to cause the main to break or if we allow the main to break by not taking preventative action, then outside of those two cases we are not liable for the damage necessarily,” said Russell.

Residents aren’t happy with that response and think that Missouri American Water’s insurance company should cover the cleanup and the damages. They said this kind of damage also is not covered by flood insurance so they are really dealing with a mess and an insurance battle.