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Sinking Buildings in Roundup

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ROUNDUP, Mont. -

The town of Roundup has seen flooding and wildfires, and that's not the end of the story. Roundup has buildings, which are sinking into the ground for a variety of reasons.

Homeowners say it's from too much water in the soil and that moisture is getting into the foundation.

"It kind of breaks your heart but I guess when it boils down and it happens,” says Gary Thomas, a Roundup resident. “What are you going to do about it? You just got to fix it and go along."

Thomas had to raise part of his house after it cracked and sank in this past spring because of too much water in the soil.

"It's a big issue up here,” says Monty Sealey, Homes on the Range board chairman. “It's also a solvable issue obviously because it's worked for that big facility over there."

Sealey says about 10 years ago, Homes on the Range, an apartment complex, sank nearly 11 inches and a geotechnical firm says the soil was saturated from poor drainage. They've stabilized the building, fixed the draining issues and there hasn't been more sinking.

"Just really encourage people to when you're going to do a new area and build it up, make sure you ask some questions and pay attention to what's happened around," Sealey says.

Even though the nature of soil is like this, residents say Roundup still has a lot of good things happening.

"I've lived here all my life,” Thomas says. “Contrary to what a lot of people say, I like the water. I like to drink it. It's my home."

Sealey says the sinking isn't just happening in one location. It affects buildings all over town.

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