Tampa, Florida -- The 10 News Investigators have found new allegations about Plumbing Rescue, a major plumbing company that continues to receive consumer complaints and is facing several criminal investigations.
It's the company with the big yellow trucks that you see throughout the area, and the one that runs specials in the newspapers for low-cost plumbing solutions. However, many people have told us the low-cost solution is the furthest from the truth. Besides being investigated by the Department of Insurance Fraud, Plumbing Rescue is now being fined by Hillsborough County.
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The latest job that has Plumbing Rescue in real hot water once again involves repair of a clogged laundry tub at a home in Brandon. The company didn't get the necessary permit for the repairs.
Hillsborough Building and Construction official Wayne Francis says there is no question Plumbing Rescue was required to pull permits for the job. When we told Francis the owner of the company, Jim Myers, told us he didn't know he was supposed to pull a permit, Francis told us, "If he is a contractor, he is aware of the permitting requirement via statute and his license."
Plumbing Rescue is being cited and fined a thousand dollars for not pulling the permit on the job, which it charged thousands of dollars to complete. We showed the tape of the work to other plumbers who say Plumbing Rescue charged an excessive amount to unclog the laundry tub.
Meanwhile, Tampa Plumbing Chief Joe Tomassi also looked at our tape and said during his 16 years with the city he would occasionally run into plumbers who didn't pull the necessary permits for a job. He says in his experience the permits aren't pulled because that triggers an inspection.
He says, "From what I've had in the years that I was the plumbing chief, what I ran across is a lot of them didn't want it because they were working on under the radar, if I can use that term."
Plumbing Rescue owner Jim Myers complained that in one of our previous stories we said he didn't get a permit for the job and even sent us the permit. However, Myers pulled the permit after completing the work, and he was forced to tear it up, do it again, and then he never got a final inspection.