Sugar Creek Construction denies driver's claim I-77 construction damaged vehicle

- FOX 46 Charlotte continues to investigate more stories about dangerous conditions in the construction zone on Interstate 77. On Tuesday, a driver said a rut in the road damaged his car and now he’s upset the construction company said it isn’t going to pay for the damage.

The driver’s insurance company denied their claim stating the man didn’t have enough evidence construction debris damaged his vehicle.

But when you see and hear the proof he had – it’s hard to believe.

“When you’ve got a hole that deep…of course you’re going to blow a tire and a wheel,” Noah Lazes said.

Related: Man says I-77 construction debris totaled wife's car

Lazes said he was driving on the interstate with his son one Saturday evening when, “We were trying to head to a soccer game which of course he missed, sorry coach for him missing the game. We were in this rut that exists up and down I-77. You have no choice but to drive in the rut. It not only blew my tire but it also bent my rim,” Lazes explained.

Lazes said he filed a claim with NCDOT and Sugar Creek Construction – the company doing the road work. He included pictures of where it happened and other proof.  

“I thought that having certificates of the rollback picking up the car on the side of the road on I-77 would probably be enough. We had the reports from the automobile dealership and the insurance agent hired by Sugar Creek Construction to come look at the car to look at the damage. I thought that would be enough,” he said.

Related: I-77 construction woes continue

But it wasn’t enough for Sugar Creek’s insurance company. In a letter it denied Lazes’ claim stating, “There is not enough evidence to place liability on my insured, Sugar Creek Construction.”

That blew him away.

“Short of my driving around full-time with a video cameras in my hand, how much more proof could I possibly provide?” Lazes asked.

When FOX 46 Charlotte asked Mobility Partners what kind of evidence Sugar Creek Construction requires for a claim it replied that, “There is no one universal answer to your questions. The responses to these questions will be determined on a case by case basis.”

Related: I-77 SAFETY: Construction debris flies into driver's windshield

“I’d like to know from Sugar Creek Construction ‘Have you ever paid a single claim related to this road?’ If you didn’t pay our claim I can’t imagine you paid any of them,” Lazes said.

FOX 46 Charlotte asked Sugar Creek Construction that exact question, but received no reply by the time of our 6 p.m. newscast. NCDOT said according to the contract the construction company is responsible for any damage.

Some good news? NCDOT said it’s working with the construction company to set a time they will fill in all these ruts and holes in the road. We’ll keep you updated when that’s set to happen.

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