Halloween is over and the horror stories from this years contest are finally in and ready to be revealed! Due to the limited participation, we have decided to share the majority of submissions we received in a single post. Grab a small bowl of pop corn (or actually, you might not want to eat while reading these), sit back and get ready for some restoration stories.
We’ll start of ‘easy’ and take you through a couple of shorter stories before bringing on what we think are the juicier ones! And we can’t help ourselves, so there might be the odd comment in between the stories as well. Anyways.
Here we go:
"We were called out for a Trauma Clean up. When we arrived at the job site, the body was found on the kitchen floor. After removing the body fluids, there were stains on the floor, and we had to seal that area with the stain blocker. 👀"
"I once did a sewage mitigation where a line had backed up into the home. We get there and the husband is screaming at his wife to clean up this massive pile of poop…. it literally looked like a volcano because it was so high. All of this came from the toilet. The stench was unbearable and two technicians instantly vomited and had to leave the job."
🤢 Oh my goodness! Please don’t scream at your significant others! Especially not to deal with something like this, call a professional!
"In 2004, there was an earthquake that rattled South LA. 2 days before, a retrofitting company accidentally broke a sewage pipe under the house. I responded to that crawlspace sewage loss, and during the clean up process, the earthquake hit. I thought the house was going to fall on me while I was working. 😮 It shook the living hell out of me, for real."
"I was on my way to a water loss, and I accidentally cut off a guy on the freeway. This guy was furious, and started to yell at me, flashed the middle finger and threw a coffee mug at me, and god knows what. I got off the freeway, and took the street instead. I had to loose this maniac. Finally, I get to the water loss, and guess who the homeowner was? You got it, I didn't know whether to leave, or face this maniac. When we saw each other, he knew why I accidentally cut him off. Back in 1999, I was working for a company that guaranteed a 1 hour response. THIS WAS 😨"
As much coffee ☕ as I would need on standby to be able to guarantee a 1 hour response I definitely would not like it thrown at me. Remember kids, anger rarely makes a situation better! oh - and also don’t cut people off.
"I’ve seen a lot of horror stories in my business but one in particular was bad. A client of mine, before I knew him, had bought a house that he was going to renovate. He renovated the home and trusted the contractor. At about 90% complete, the roof and windows started leaking. We walked through after another contractor opened up the drywall in the ceiling to investigate. They main structural beams were soaked and black with mould. The roof was investigated and the roof was never replaced correctly. The windows didn’t have waterproofing and “black caulking” was used to try and plug all the mistakes. Furthermore, the rotten structural beam has to be replaced. My client spent $1.5m to get to this point and it all had to get ripped out plus more to remedy along with 1 year of time. It was a disaster but thank goodness the remediation contractor was incredible."
There’s this thing about trust, it’s important, but trusting the wrong people can get very expensive. Terribly sorry for your client, we hope it all turned out ok in the end.
"I was inspecting a property to write an estimate once. The property was in extremely poor condition and appeared to have been vandalized. Well, my electric tape measure just stopped working, so I had to run to the car and get my backup tape measure.As I walked out of the house there was a large tour group standing in front of the house and the guide was telling them about how haunted THE HOUSE I WAS IN WAS! So I laughed thinking it was a funny coincidence, grabbed the tape measure and went back into the house.
And everything seemed rather normal and ordinary. Other than it being kind of a creepy house with rather extreme damage (holes in drywall in hard to reach areas, spray painting and drawing on the walls, illegible writing on the ceiling, etc). But then when we got back to the office none of the pictures from the attic came out. They weren't dark or blurry, they looked like old TV outage screens (colored bars, snow, etc)...We didn't get the job, and at that point I didn't mind... Lol"
Ok.. Haunted houses.. Now things are starting to get a little freaky. 😨
"I had a client with a burst pipe in the above floor joist in a basement and they had a lot of contents that had to be moved around. As I was doing my thing, the client went up stairs and put on a lizard mask, not a dust mask like you would think, but a mask that as she moved her mouth, it looked like her face was a lizard face. She "prowled" around the corner kind of slouched over moving her head weird as if she is a lizard hunting an insect and proceeds to eat dehydrated crickets that are covered in cheddar cheese powder like they are potato chips. I was not sure if she was legit crazy or just trying to get a reaction out of me so I did what I felt was the best thing I could do at the time... I ate a few crickets with her. I was kind of weirded out but did not want to risk her being a legit psycho. Turns out she was actually just a really interesting client who was just messing around with me and we had a good chat as I was working. That job could have turned out completely different."
Freaky! A completely different kind of freaky 😂 In my opinion, this one wins the hilarity price, that’s for sure. Glad to hear you were a good sport and ate some crickets with the lizard lady!
"In water restoration, nearly every story could be considered a horror story, but I believe this one takes the cake.
We had just found this large investor who wanted us to be their primary contractor... This was very important to us for future growth in our business. The house was abandoned for several month. This was the house we needed to prove our worth. We walked inside for the first time to witness the growth which had been occurring for months. The black and green was everywhere. We quoted a price to the investor and allotted ourselves 2 months to rebuild. We commenced work immediately.
While ripping out drywall, a piece of it was connected to a board attached to a supply line... The supply line broke and sprayed black water into the mouth of the employee who decided to remove his PPE. Meanwhile as we ripped out the drywall, we noticed cracks appearing in other areas of the house... upon closer inspection, almost every 2x4 stud was rotted at the bottom and only a few were touching the ground. we now had a structural nightmare on our hands... We stopped demolition of the drywall as it was likely the only thing holding up the house.
The next few days we were bracing 2x4 studs while slowly removing drywall, one section at a time. Without any warning, the exterior wall collapsed on the side of the house, thankfully no one was injured. A few days later, the employee who was sprayed in the mouth, was rushed to the hospital on life support due to a bacterial infection which had taken over his body. We didn't see him for months afterwards. At this point with several employees getting sick, one of them on life support, and the house nearly falling down on top of us... at the same time I was trying to meet a budget for our investor... I was never so tempted to quit in my life. To top off the horror of this project, the ground had sunk... In the back room of the house, the back wall had sunk which torqued the windows and the door adding so much more added work and expenses which were expected. This was one of those jobs, where it would have been better to completely demolish and rebuild. I have survived to tell the story... On my birthday which is 10/31 - Halloween... so fitting."
I don’t know really know what to say about this one.. but you’re right! It does take the cake! We have a winner! 🍰 Congrats not only on your new FLIR ONE Pro camera but also on surviving this absolutely horrific job - and, we hope your employee who decided to remove the PPE at this terrible job survived as well!
Although this story might have won this years contest we would like to encourage people to think twice about job sites like the one in this story. If a house is on the verge of collapse, stay outside - and please make sure that you and your people all wear the appropriate PPE at all times!
If you didn't participate in this years contest but have a great story that you would like to share please don't hesitate to submit it via the contest page.