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Homeowners, drivers still dealing with consequences of monster hailstorm one year later

Posted at 6:28 PM, May 08, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-08 21:26:11-04

WHEAT RIDGE, Colo. -- It's been one year since a monster hailstorm laid waste to a large swath of Lakewood, Wheat Ridge and Arvada.

Scars are still visible at the Garrison Village townhome complex near 46th and Garrison.

"It looks like somebody took a machine gun and just machine gunned the side of the west side buildings," said longtime resident Mike Cronstedt.

The golf ball-sized hailstones shredded the siding, window screens and glass on several buildings.

Neighbor Gene Brockriede remembers the storm.

"It was the loudest thing I ever heard," he said. "It was like bam, bam, bam, bam, bam."

The roofs have been replaced, but the siding is still in shreds.

One resident, who asked to remain anonymous, said there is a legal dispute between the HOA and the insurance company.

"It's very frustrating," she said, "Nobody will give us any answers."

Another resident told Denver7 that the dispute centers on the scope of the repairs.

He said the insurance company is apparently willing to replace the damaged siding, but not the siding that has not been damaged.

That could be an issue because the new siding might not match the existing siding.

"That could affect property values," Cronstedt said.

Auto repair scam

It's not just homeowners stressing out about repairs.

Last August, several drivers told Denver7 that they took their cars to Elevation Performance and that their insurance companies paid Elevation thousands of dollars for work that was never done.  Elevation then declared bankruptcy.

"I honestly cannot believe this," said Shanna Salazar, one of the victims, "that people are so cruel and hard up for money that they have to take advantage of people."

It happens all too frequently, according to Lee Fishbein, the longtime owner of Dent Doctors of Denver.

"You get guys coming in from everywhere," he said.  They'll pitch a tent.  They're like a band of gypsies."

Fishbein said anyone whose car is damaged in a hailstorm should do their homework.

"Check with the secretary of state. Check with the Better Business Bureau," he said. "The worst thing you can do is  have somebody that has no experience fixing your car, because you only have one chance to do it right."