Plumber responds to angry customer's complaints

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - The owner of a Lake Charles plumbing company that was the subject of a story we aired Tuesday is responding to an angry customer's complaints.

Lake Charles Roto Rooter owner Darren Stidham says the employee responding to Connie Gawith's call was not a licensed plumber but is working to complete his certification.

"Our goal is to get his license.  Six others would've been able to present their licenses," Stidham said.

Stidham said despite the disagreements with Gawith, his company is still reputable and was working to answer the high volume of calls received last week during the winter weather.

"We have six licensed plumbers.  Ten men total.  It was cold and out of the six, only three showed up that day," Stidham said.

Stidham says the agreement with Gawith was fulfilled when they repaired the first leaking pipe they discovered.  Stidham says he stands by the prices he quoted Gawith for repairing leaks at her mother's house

"The first price was given at $500. She asked us to leave and she wasn't going to spend that kind of money. We went back, tried to reassess it just to get her water on. We brought it down to 249 or whatever the cents was and get the ok. We gave her the price up front, started the work, put the water on. Another leak [was discovered} under the house. We went back to assess the situation with another price to continue the repair.>

Stidham says in most cases, they would return the customer's money when they're not satisfied.  But in this case, his company wasn't paid for the work.

Stidham estimates his company has responded to thousands of calls with few complaints.