A large construction project on a university campus fell behind and cost more to complete because of the actions of a Connecticut subcontractor, a general contracting company claims in recent court filings. The general contractor is suing the Connecticut company for breach of contract and negligence.

The subcontractor cost the project $1.1 million in a number of ways, the complaint asserts. For example, the subcontractor twice caused major property damage, the plaintiff says. The subcontractor’s workers dropped one steel column from an upper floor in August 2012 and another in November 2012. While no one was injured, the first incident resulted in damage to a trailer and the second in damage to the sidewalk. Both incidents were indicative of the subcontractor’s negligence and failure to follow industry practices, the plaintiff asserts.

Construction accidents generally result in a shutdown of the entire site while safety inspectors investigate. That happened here, the plaintiff says, and the shutdown cost the project both time and money. The immediate loss to the plaintiff is estimated to be more than $220,000.

The actions of the subcontractor caused cost overruns to the project in general as well, the plaintiff says. The plaintiff’s contract with the property owner included two provisions: First, the contract stipulated a maximum price for the project. Any overruns would be absorbed by the plaintiff. Second, if the project came in under the maximum, the plaintiff and the property owner would split the savings.

The overruns, then, meant that the plaintiffs had to pay the overage and lost the opportunity to share in the savings.

The complaint asks for all damages, interest and attorney’s fees as well as any other relief the court deems appropriate.

Source: The Pennsylvania Record, “Breach of contract, negligence claim filed against subcontractor on Drexel Univ. project,” Jon Campisi, July 29, 2013