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Call Kurtis: My Movers Dropped My Fridge

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Eight-time Emmy Award winner Kurtis Ming is CBS13's consumer...
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A new Roseville resident is upset over the way his moving company dropped off his goods. They literally dropped his fridge off the back of the truck. He called Kurtis after the company offered just $250.

“They’re bringing in all the stuff and they drop the refrigerator off the back end of the truck,” recalled John Urrutia.

His double-door fridge bears the scars from the tumble. It happened in January as movers from Starving Students tried to wheel the appliance off the truck.

“This is where it hit the ground,” said Urrutia, pointing to a large dent in the corner of his fridge.

He says he already paid $150 to get the freezer drawer repaired, but worries the fridge is damaged internally. He filed a claim with Starving Students, asking for $1,600 to replace the fridge and repair damage he says the movers caused to his walls. But the company only offered $250.

“It was an accident, everybody understands stuff like that happens, but there has to be a certain responsibility associated with that,” said Urrutia.

“We were negligent in this case, which is why we’re willing to pay them according to the contract,” said Starving Students VP of Operations, Dean Markle.

He says Urrutia opted for the basic damage coverage of just $.60 per pound, which is required by law. Markle says people can pay their moving company for higher levels of coverage.

“If it has a lot of meaning to them or if they spent a lot of money on it they might want to purchase the extra valuation,” said Markle.

But Urrutia thinks Starving Students broke his contract by arriving ill-equipped for the move. He says the movers used a hand dolly to move the fridge, instead of a bigger appliance dolly.

“It was completely inadequate for doing the job, however, they assured us that that’s fine,” said Urrutia.

“Really the dolly wasn’t the problem because they got the refrigerator up the ramp into the truck with the same dolly,” said Markle.

After we got involved, Starving Students offered Urrutia $1,400, which he accepted. Considering he requested $1600, they took $200 off for the cost of the full value protection he could have purchased.

“People that are going to move should really consider that ahead of time so that they don’t end up in this position that I’m in,” said Urrutia.

California’s Public Utilities Commission regulates moving companies and has rules regarding moving companies’ liability. But it says it won’t get involved in disputes over claims. You’ll have to go to arbitration or court to resolve those kind of issues.

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