$2.25 million settlement for acquired lung disease, which resulted in a double lung transplant, due to negligent maintenance of property from polluted air in apartment complex.
In December 2010 our 60 year old client was diagnosed with hypersensitivity pneumonitis and pulmonary fibrosis - commonly known as Pigeon Breeders Lung - due to a 10 year exposure to microscopic air borne particle of pigeon feathers and feces (antigens) that got into the air circulating in her apartment in Yuba City. The antigens entered the apartment's air through an open condensate drain tube of the roof-mounted heat pump (HVAC unit).
Abramson Smith Waldsmith, LLP, sued the property owner, the property management company and the HVAC contractor who installed the unit, contending that the HVAC unit was improperly installed and maintained, as the drain tube should have been connected to a trap, which would have prevented the particulate matter from entering the circulating air. Further, that the property owner and management company negligently failed to abate the known problem of a pigeon infestation on the roof and around the HVAC equipment, and for maintaining a dangerous condition, specifically that the HVAC unit was open to outside air, when it was designed to be self-contained.