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Condo owners billed to remove rotting food in Plaza Towers

11:33 PM, Apr 25, 2013   |    comments
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Plaza Towers

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) - Even with an additional pump running, owners of the Plaza Towers condominium, apartment and hotel complex in Grand Rapids aren't sure when about 1,000 residents and guests can move back in.

An extra pump capable of removing 9,000 gallons of water per minute was started Thursday.

The building was flooded and hastily evacuated last Saturday morning.

The power is still out at the complex.  On Friday, a crew is going through the building removing all food left behind in refrigerators -- much of that food is spoiled, rotting and smelly.

Operators of the building are sending a $109 bill to the owners of all 144 Plaza Towers condominiums to pay for clearing out the refrigerators.

"It's one of those situations where I realize it's not their fault in terms of the flooding, but don't make it my fault," complains resident Matt Burrows. "Don't start charging me for things beyond my control."

Burrows says residents are already dealing with the expense of temporary lodging, lost food and ruined property in their flooded basement storage units.

"Everyone lost stuff," he says. "As simple as food or as personal as family photos or art that was in storage. All my wife's summer clothes are gone. Kid's toys, stereo equipment, all gone."

Because the damage is flood related, most insurance policies won't cover the loss.

"My wife just talked to our insurance agent and none of it's covered," confirms Burrows.

Now that they are pumping water out at a much faster pace, crews could get into the basement as soon as Friday to begin evaluating the extent of the flood damage and what it will take to restart electrical, water and fire suppression systems.  At that point, the building owner may have a better idea about when residents can return.

"We will roll with the punches," sighs Burrows. "Hopefully it will be as painless as possible."

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