Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Slot Cars Exposed to Water

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Grandcheapskate
    replied
    Hi Guys,
    This is a long read.

    Contacting the area newspapers and other media outlets is one of the steps I will take after giving town and state officials the opportunity to do the right thing.

    The point raised about the planning which should have been done before the golf course was turned into an office complex is right on the mark. But at this point in time I cannot let that issue take the oxygen out of the room. What officials failed to do back in the 1960s does not have an effect on the situation right now, other than the fact if the water is allowed to flow past the homes, it will flood the office building. While that is unfortunate, it is not my problem.

    The office building has multiple issues. The golf course, and therefore their building, is the lowest point in the area. Not only do they get storm water from the dead end on the north side, they have a large roadside exposure on the west side and the Garden State Parkway (which is slightly above grade) on the east side. So they get hit from three sides during a big storm.

    As to getting the neighbors involved, that may not be easy. There is only one other house (which is on the other side of the dead end) which gets affected so as far as the rest of the neighborhood is concerned, I'm sure they are more than happy storm water flows away from their homes. The neighbors across the street are going through a rough batch as one of them just lost their mother unexpectedly, and the wife is working 12-14 hours a day right now. While they are disgusted with the town and want something done, they have other priorities at the moment. I think if they were in a position to sell they would be gone.

    The other disappointing aspect is the office building has decided to stop dealing with the town out of frustration. In speaking with the head of maintenance, who is the building's liaison with the town, the complex has decided to build their own drainage system. I'll see if they follow through because it seems as if they have put this issue on the back burner and have not made any moves since the storm. His first step was going to be clearing out his side of the dead end and that has not yet happened.

    All that said, I will continue.

    Here is an interesting story. Two weeks ago my landscaper stopped by to ask if I had made any progress with the town (this is before I filed). When I said I was getting nowhere he told me he is now an elected official on some board/council and asked if I wanted to speak with the mayor. He pulls out his cell phone, calls the mayor and hands me the phone. I speak with the mayor for a few minutes, being very courteous, telling him he needs to get the dead end cleared out which I explain could be done in less than a day. And he should know, as a kid his father lived about 10 houses up the street (I grew up with his two younger uncles) and he lives less than a half mile away. The mayor asks for my phone number and says he will have the town engineer get in touch with me.

    That was two weeks ago. Do you hear my phone ringing???

    Tuesday I go to the state assemblyman's office where I will speak with one of the staff. I already sent her the photos and will bring all the paperwork and we'll see where that gets me. I do not expect much but it's all part of the process in building a case which says I did all I could.

    After that, I will probably go ahead and file a lawsuit if for no other reason than the experience. What's the worst that could happen, I lose? While I need to do a little research, there are three levels of courts. The first is small claims court which has a limit of $3,000. Next is a level of court has a $15,000 limit. And finally there is Superior Court which has no limit. My lawyer friend said the $15,000 court will be far more friendly to an individual without a lawyer, is less formal than Superior Court and the court date will come up more quickly. Since the filing fee for Superior Court is $250 I'm sure the lower courts are even less. And once in motion, the process becomes public.

    Meanwhile FEMA came by and approved my claim for the wall. The problem? The assessor only put in for $1,600 and the wall estimates are $5,500 and up. So I will have to file an appeal once I get the paperwork.

    My thinking is if FEMA gives me enough to cover the wall (or enough to put a fence there instead as I do not need a wall) then all I need is to cover the loss from property. My full cost estimate is about $24,000 with $8,000 for the wall (I included the cost of adding bracing for the wall). If I forget the wall, then $15,000 would cover what I believe is the lost value of the slot cars, computer equipment, etc.

    So next update will be Tuesday. Wish me luck.

    Thanks for the read and suggestions.

    Joe

    Leave a comment:


  • NCSS
    replied
    Originally posted by RichD View Post
    You might consider contacting your local TV station, it would help if you could get your neighbors to back you up.
    The city issued a building permit for the office complex that was built on the golf course. The issue of drainage should have been considered before the first shovelful of dirt was turned over. I imagine that the city was greedy to collect the taxes that the office complex would bring in and ignored any liabilities that might result.
    I was thinking the same thing, if the OP is willing to go public. I don't know the media ecosystem back east, but may I suggest not overlooking any local newspaper(s) that serve the area, even weeklies, or web-only outlets. TV stations often collaborate these days with other outlets, so getting a story in one outlet may lead to more stories. THAT will get elected officials' attention. I've seen it happen dozens of times.

    (In another life I used to generate stories on a topic that cannot be discussed on Slot Car Illustrated because it starts with "pea" and ends with "icks." Emphasis on ick.)

    But the OP's attention to detail shows he could easily distill the issue into easily digestible bites for reporters, as part of an initial pitch.

    Quick bullet points can be quite effective, allowing the reporter to ask for more information if they are interested. Keep in mind that in today's diminished local media landscape, lots of outlets have a small fraction of the number of reporters they used to have. So if a reporter commits to an interview, they need to know a story will likely result.

    And filing a lawsuit, if the OP can afford to and wants to, would probably lead to some kind of coverage. But that's a big step, obviously.

    Excellent advice on reaching out to affected neighbors. Kind wishes to the OP.

    Leave a comment:


  • RichD
    replied
    You might consider contacting your local TV station, it would help if you could get your neighbors to back you up.
    The city issued a building permit for the office complex that was built on the golf course. The issue of drainage should have been considered before the first shovelful of dirt was turned over. I imagine that the city was greedy to collect the taxes that the office complex would bring in and ignored any liabilities that might result.

    Leave a comment:


  • Grandcheapskate
    replied
    After spending many days putting together a tort claim for the town, I received a rejection letter 6 days after I submitted it. Considering there was a weekend between my submission and when I received the rejection letter, the township rejected my claim less than 48 hours after I submitted it. And the reason for the rejection was not even something I was claiming.

    So I wrote an e-mail to my councilman and the mayor's office expressing my complete disgust with how little consideration my claim received. How could they possibly investigate my claim and get out a rejection in less than 48 hours? Today I found out.

    I got an answer to my e-mail from the town attorney. It was a fairly lengthy e-mail but the bottom line is he stated the town has complete immunity when it comes to damage from storm water. Which is why my claim was rejected as soon as it was received. My only recourse...court.

    My next step will be going to the offices of my state rep and senator, looking them right in the eye and have them explain why the town should even worry about flooding my property if they have immunity. It is the state which gives them this immunity so these guys are just as culpable. And why do we even have to file a tort if they have no liability?

    It is maddening and discouraging at the same time.

    Joe

    Leave a comment:


  • Grandcheapskate
    replied
    Originally posted by SouthShoreRacing View Post
    My guess is that money is a factor. How much would it cost to correct the problem? What other road, drainage, sewage, etc. issues are there that need to be addressed? A face to face meeting with town officials might offer some details on that.

    Also, I'm not sure why this loss wouldn't be covered by your homeowners insurance unless you are in a designated flood plain and do not have flood coverage.
    As to money, to fix my issue is simple and doesn't cost much at all. Come to the dead end, cut down a couple trees and remove the chain link fence. They could clear this up in a day or two. The problem with this approach is it frees up the water to go into the building behind me...which is going to happen anyway until they really do a major construction effort.

    So instead, they leave the dead end partially blocked, allow the water to back up into the houses and then let it flood the building behind me. Morons.

    The problem with a face to face meeting is apparently town officials do not want to meet with us. The head of maintenance for the building located behind me contacted the town engineer requesting a site visit and either got ignored or was told they would not come. I'll give it a try once I file my tort papers.

    The lawyer I spoke with yesterday told me my town, which I have lived in my whole life, is no longer the town of my youth and has among the least responsive town officials of any surrounding community.

    As far as insurance goes, standard home owner policies do not cover any damage once rain water touches the ground. For that you need flood insurance. We are not in a flood zone and do not get standing water - our flooding occurs when the water table rises and water seeps in through the basement walls and floor. No one gets above ground flooding - ever. Only this time because the storm water got rerouted from the street to my yard I got water in the above ground garage.

    Joe
    Last edited by Grandcheapskate; 10-05-2021, 02:25 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • SouthShoreRacing
    replied
    My guess is that money is a factor. How much would it cost to correct the problem? What other road, drainage, sewage, etc. issues are there that need to be addressed? A face to face meeting with town officials might offer some details on that.

    Also, I'm not sure why this loss wouldn't be covered by your homeowners insurance unless you are in a designated flood plain and do not have flood coverage.

    Leave a comment:


  • Grandcheapskate
    replied
    Having been dealing with this mess for over a month now, I can definitely see where this is going. I have spoken to three lawyers, two of them "off the record". All three have the same basic opinion...no matter how valid your claim against a municipality may be, townships will always claim immunity and in most cases it will be granted. In fact, I can hear the hesitancy in each lawyer to ever get involved with trying to resolve issues with a township. It became obvious yesterday it would cost more in lawyer fees than I could hope to recover.

    I asked the lawyer yesterday, "If the township can always claim immunity and has no liability for damages caused by not fixing problems it knows exist, then what motivation do they have to fix the issue which causes the flooding to my house?". The response..."None". His only advice was to file the tort claim and wait for it to almost certainly be rejected. Then vote them out of office or run for office myself. He also suggested telling the town administrator I want a direct face to face meeting at the site causing the issue..and if he does not respond, go right to the mayor. Create a paper trail.

    Am I the only one who thinks this process is completely insane?

    So I will file the tort claim and let them reject it. Meanwhile I think I will try to get a face to face meeting with my state representatives and try to get the answer to the question above..."If the township can always claim immunity and has no liability for damages caused by not fixing problems it knows exist, then what motivation do they have to fix the issue which causes the flooding to my house?".

    Joe
    Last edited by Grandcheapskate; 10-05-2021, 08:16 AM.

    Leave a comment:


  • Speedhoppy
    replied
    Joe, Sorry for my late response to your unfortunate circumstance. I cannot add anything to the suggestions already offered; while I had my basement get 9" of water once due to an unusually heavy storm, none of my slot stuff got touched (but I did lose some furniture, as well as mattresses; amazing how quickly THEY soak up water like a giant sponge).......

    I would like to read how the drying/cleaning efforts come out for you........

    Leave a comment:


  • Grandcheapskate
    replied
    Originally posted by BIG E View Post
    What a nightmare, Joe. My sincere condolences on the loss of you Mom.
    Stay strong while trying to recover from that, and secondly, the damage to your HO slot car collection.
    Thank you Ernie. I was never given any time to reflect on my mom before the storm hit. It has been a brutal few months.

    The one nightmarish issue I see when push comes to shove with the town is how to value the slot cars. In this hobby we have no official appraisers. We have some books in the past which listed prices but those books are over 20 years old and the prices have no relationship to the current market or availability.

    I'm thinking the best appraisers in this hobby will be those who have extensive collections and have been collecting for decades (I include myself in this category). If you have people with potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars tied up in slot car collections, their opinion must carry weight. And that is not all that hard to do if you have been collecting for years and bought cars at the right time. And if not them, then who?

    Imagine if you had bought the Tomy Red Bull car when it was first released at $25. Or bought many of them. I unfortunately did not buy one as I thought $25 was getting to be too high a price point back then. My how things have changed.

    As far as value lost due to water exposure, I would think anyone serious about this hobby and involved for years would be able to offer an opinion on just how much value a car loses if it comes in contact with water for any period of time. While opinions may vary on what percentage of value a car loses once it needs to be removed from its original package, one thing is certain...once removed, it is impossible to prove the car is new and unrun.

    Joe
    Last edited by Grandcheapskate; 09-23-2021, 06:46 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • BIG E
    replied
    What a nightmare, Joe. My sincere condolences on the loss of you Mom.
    Stay strong while trying to recover from that, and secondly, the damage to your HO slot car collection.
    We've spoken many times about what you have and the pristine condition you keep it in.
    Hope to see you in Parsippany on November 21. -- Ernie

    Leave a comment:


  • Grandcheapskate
    replied
    Hi Guys,
    This post is probably only for collectors. As I put together my spreadsheet of the slot cars which got exposed to water, I need to come up with a market value to assign to each one and then figure out what percentage of that market value has been lost because the car has not just been exposed to water, but had to be removed from its original package.

    I believe there are three ways to determine a slot car's current market value. One is (unfortunately) eBay, the second is finding it listed on a hobby website and the third is by getting the opinions of long time collectors or the price vendors are getting for their cars . As I take a quick look for Tomy cars still in the package, the absolute lowest price I can find is in the high 30s with most cars much higher. Factor in the fact the cars I needed to open are in the Australian packaging and the least expensive is $50 or more. That's if you can even find them.

    So with all that said, when I figure in the fact the cars were in hard to find Australian packaging and most will be nearly impossible to find, I want to estimate the average Tomy value at $75 (I just saw a just released Mega-G go for over $90). I then believe the value lost on any car which needed to be removed from the package is at least 50% of it's value (how do you prove it is new?), with another 25% lost due to water exposure. Therefore I want to claim a loss of about $55 per car. Multiplied by the 75 cars I needed to open and the total is $4,125.

    Then take into account those which got wet but then seemed to dry out enough where I can risk leaving them in the package. Figure those lost at least 35% of their value. There were at least as many of those so that loss would come to $1,968. And that is just Tomy.

    There are still the Tyco twinpacks, Lifelike twinpacks and Lifelike singles, along with the fact six master cases of JL pullbacks got soaked. Looks like I was able to save all the individual JL pullback boxes but I would estimate I lost between $3-$5 per car when I sell them as water exposed. Six master cases is 288 cars.

    Now, if the town wants to find each of those cars in pristine packaged condition and replace mine then I don't need any compensation. But good luck finding even 5% of them (and some have to be found twice) in the next 5 years.

    I am keeping all the opened packages as proof. I also took pictures of every car before it was opened.

    Am I out of line here or do the Tomy numbers seem about right?

    Thanks...Joe
    Last edited by Grandcheapskate; 09-18-2021, 08:16 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • Grandcheapskate
    replied
    In talking with the head of maintenance for the office building, he has spoken to the town but got the usual political mumbo jumbo. He was told in order to fix the issue, it will probably not happen within the next 4-5 years. For myself, in consultation with my lawyer, I will continue to e-mail the town engineer, warn them of the continuing threat (especially when the leaves start falling in a few weeks) and outline what needs to be done and can be done quickly.

    The entire dead end needs to be cleared of all trees and the chain link fence removed so a clear unobstructed escape route for storm water is available until the town comes up with a sufficient drainage system. This can be done in a day or two if they are serious. The problem of the water going into the office parking lot will require a long term solution. But allowing the dead end to get blocked up only causes the two houses at the end of the dead end to suffer water damage and the water will eventually end up in the parking lot anyway...so why cause damage to the homes before it gets there?

    It does not take a 100 year storm to overwhelm the sewer drains which are located before the dead end. In fact, just opening the hydrants up the street will do it. Storms which overwhelm the existing sewers happens at least two times a year and I have seen it jump the curb before, but not in the quantity of this latest storm.

    I can only hope the obvious failure of the town to keep the dead end clear is enough to get me the compensation to make me whole.

    Meanwhile, I needed to open 75 sealed Tomy cars, 40 of which were on Australian cards. The cars and chassis appear clean. While I was able to dry out some of the packages (on these, it seems the paper inside absorbed water and not the cars) I still have at least a dozen Tyco twinpacks which will need to be opened as well as 30+ Lifelike Bass Pro Twinpacks. I have opened about five Bass Pro twinpacks and the chassis show signs of buildup on the motor magnets. The Bass Pro twinpacks appear to not be sealed as tightly as the Tomy and Tyco.

    No bodies I have removed show any signs of water damage and in fact are very clean. However, calculating the lost value of the cars which have been removed from the package and exposed to water is ongoing and I can see it being the biggest area of contention.

    I also lost two Doomsday Duel sets and may be losing four Burnham Boiler sets. The Burnham sets sell for well over $100 if you can still find them.

    Thanks...Joe
    Last edited by Grandcheapskate; 09-13-2021, 09:33 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • Spank
    replied
    Sorry for your bad luck. As someone who deals with drainage as part of my job I read your detailed description and looked at your pictures with interest. In the Toronto area new subdivisions are designed to withstand the 100 year storm (a large storm that theoretically occurs once every 100 years) without causing any flooding. For storms that are larger than the 100 year storm flooding may occur. In comes down to economics since designing for a storm larger than 100 years would cost more money. If the street use to drain to the golf course then the office building property that replaced it should continue to accept the street drainage. The fact that they were flooded means that the drainage route was not designed properly or wasn’t designed for a storm that large. Your reverse slope driveway that angles down from the street to the garage is not a good practise and is no longer permitted here but was certainly done in the past. Your concern about the debris getting trapped by the trees and fence and blocking the flow is a valid concern and it’s good that you brought this to the Township's attention. The fact that they didn’t do anything about it adds to your case. I think the Township will claim that the system works for smaller storms but that the size of this storm exceeded the capacity and the flooding was unavoidable. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news.

    Leave a comment:


  • HO RacePro
    replied
    Grandcheapskate,

    For the more recalcitrant packages you might try using a desiccant. If you truly want to live up to your cheapskate moniker you might try loading you packages into a plastic bag along with a fabric bag filled with uncooked rice. This is a method commonly used to rescue cell phones that have been immersed in water. Sometimes works.

    Oriental grocery stores carry 50 pound bags of rice - probably as cheap as you can get it. And you can still eat the stuff when you're done with it.

    Or you can use actual chemical desiccant. You can buy the stuff on eBay by the quart. The nice thing about chemical desiccant is you can reuse it. Once it becomes saturated -- usually indicated by a color change -- you can drive off the moisture by heating it for a few hours. Google for the right temperature, or (gasp!) check the manufacturer's recommendation.

    Ed Bianchi

    Leave a comment:


  • Grandcheapskate
    replied
    All I have to do is look up the street about 5 houses to see piles of stuff on the curb. I believe those houses lost everything in the basement but the first floor is fine. For all of us in our neighborhood, the water comes up from the ground or right though basement walls not from above ground. You never see standing water once the storm stops.

    This is why I kept a lot of stuff in the garage and not in the basement. The garage is above ground, higher than the land on the side and should never flood.

    I am putting together a CD of all the pictures I took (for possible future dealings with the town), and continue to take, so I will post a few of the slot car pictures here as time permits.

    The bad news is I spoke with a lawyer and his belief is that I will get nothing from the town because laws protect them even if they are negligent. However, when I mentioned I saved the e-mails I sent them about the problem, and the office building behind me also tried to warn the town, he had a more optimistic outlook. We'll see how this goes...I have plenty of time to make myself enough of an irritant to the town that they may eventually give me compensation to make me go away...and I am very good at being an irritant!!!!

    Joe
    Last edited by Grandcheapskate; 09-10-2021, 08:03 PM.

    Leave a comment:

sex vidio
antalya escort
tsyd.org/lisansli-canli-bahis-siteleri-2022-guvenilir-bahis-siteleri
lara escort escort istanbul escort sirinevler escort antalya
atasehir escort taksim eskort lara eskort bayan bakirkoy bayan eskort
gaziantep escort
gaziantep escort
erotik film izle Rus escort gaziantep rus escort
deneme bonusu
kadikoy escort kartal escort
eurocasino
brazzers
Blonde and brunette dirty 3some in semi obscure Профессор трахнул студенту толстым хером pelicula embarazada por accidente
Working...
X