A Pennsylvania location of the Best Western hotel chain was unreasonably dangerous and unfit for habitation, according to a New York couple who recently filed a lawsuit against the hotel and Premier Hotel Management. The personal injury complaint, which was filed on behalf of Julie and Keith Nutt, claims that the couple suffered severe injuries from carbon monoxide poisoning as an alleged result of the lack of safety equipment at the hotel. The complaint was filed on January 4, 2016 in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania.
Emergency responders found the couple unconscious
According to the personal injury lawsuit, Keith Nutt found his wife unconscious on August 24, 2014, at which point he called for emergency responders. When emergency responders arrived at the Best Western in Dunmore, Pennsylvania, they discovered both Julie and Keith Nutt lying unconscious in the hallway outside of their room. The pair had been experiencing the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, including dizziness, weakness, general distress, and flu-like symptoms.
The complaint states that the emergency responders checked the couple’s hotel room with a 4-Gas Meter and got a reading of 80 plus PPM, which is a very high level of carbon monoxide. The lawsuit points out that this reading was taken after the door to the room had been left open for a prolonged period, suggesting that the couple may have been exposed to even higher levels of carbon monoxide.
After checking the carbon monoxide levels, the emergency responders initiated a complete evacuation of the hotel. A local gas company arrived at the scene and determined that the carbon monoxide leak had not been caused by a gas leak. Further investigation of the hotel revealed that all three floors had varying levels of elevated carbon monoxide, ranging from 10 PPM to over 300 PPM. The lawsuit claims that responders discovered malfunctioning equipment in the hotel’s utility room and basement. The Nutt’s room had been near the utility room. It was determined that the utility room and the Nutt’s room had been the sources of the carbon monoxide leak.
Hotel was shut down after carbon monoxide leak
On the following day, investigators returned to the hotel. They ruled that the building was unsafe because “it lacked adequate protection from fire and it contained unsafe equipment,” according to the carbon monoxide lawsuit. The gas hot water exhaust system for the kitchen had significant rust damage and was not properly connected to the chimney. The room that housed the hot water heater was not draining properly. Furthermore, the pool heater exhaust system was “totally rusted out and not connected.”
Additional safety violations were issued regarding the sprinkler system, stairways, and electrical code. As a result of the numerous safety violations, investigators permanently shut down the hotel.
Both plaintiffs were taken to a nearby hospital, where they received treatment for carbon monoxide poisoning. Julie Nutt had very severe carbon monoxide poisoning; she had to be airlifted from the community medical center to a larger hospital for treatment. The lawsuit states that she suffers from severe and ongoing medical problems as an alleged result, including post-traumatic stress disorder, cognitive difficulties, and other medical problems, some of which may be permanent.
Your legal rights and options
The premises liability lawyers of Edelman, Krasin & Jaye would like to extend the offer of a complimentary case review to New Yorkers who have suffered carbon monoxide poisoning. During your appointment, our legal team will explain your legal options – with no obligation or cost to you. Call our New York law firm today at 1-800-469-7429 to let us help you begin the process of securing compensation.