Condo lawsuit: former residents sickened by filthy A/C system

Mother and toddler diagnosed with Legionnaires’ disease in 2016
By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities

How many times have you heard the real estate sales pitch that the condo lifestyle is carefree?

It’s often untrue.

The truth is, even if you happen to own or rent a luxury condominium in the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn, there’s no guarantee the building will be maintained to high standards.

McCarren Park Mews Condominium units rent for at least $3,000 per month. The 120-unit building is just ten years old. At the time I write this post, there are two condos listed — one priced at $1.55 million, the other listed for $2.35 million.

Given the price points on these condos, you would think that the owners serving on the association board, and their management agent from First Service Residential, would make sure that heating and air conditioning units were regularly inspected, cleaned, and kept in reliable working order.

But according several recent reports, tenants of a McCarren Park Mews condo, who relocated from Alabama and rented their unit in 2015, experienced problems with the heating unit in the winter. The system was serviced and repaired.

By spring of 2016, each member of the family of four had fallen ill from upper respiratory infections. Parents Margot and Patrick Cooney say that their three-year-old son ended up with pneumonia, while Margot and their 1-year old son were diagnosed with Legionnaires’ disease in September 2016, right around the time that McCarren Park Mews Condo Association notified residents and owners that their heating and air conditioning units must be shut down, due to discovery of the Legionella bacteria in the cooling tower.

The family was forced to move out of their condo, leaving behind many of their belongings, which had become infested with mold spores. Patrick left his job due to his own illness and the time needed to care for his family. The family returned to Alabama in October 2016.

The Cooneys, represented by their attorney, D.G. Pantazis Jr., are now suing the condo association and management company, First Service Residential, for negligence, seeking at least $850,000 in damages.



Williamsburg condo’s moldy AC unit gave our kid legionnaire’s disease: suit

By Priscilla DeGregory, NY Post
July 3, 2018 | 8:30pm | Updated

Hipsters fight to live in Williamsburg — but this local family was fighting just to stay alive.

A young family is suing a hip condo building in the trendy neighborhood, alleging their 13-month-old son and his mom caught legionnaires’ disease from the property’s moldy, contaminated air conditioning system.

The Cooney family moved from Alabama in November 2015 and rented a unit in the fancy McCarren Park Mews Condominium — boasting a yoga garden, “state-of-the-art fitness center” and children’s playroom — but was forced to move out a year later due to horrible health problems, according to their suit, filed in Brooklyn federal court Tuesday.

Mom Margot Cooney, 31, and tot Watson were both diagnosed with the bacterial lung infection — while then-3-year-old son Wade was diagnosed with pneumonia, according to the court papers.

Right before their diagnoses in September 2016, a property manager ordered a shut-down of all air conditioners when the cooling tower tested positive for the Legionella bacteria, the suit claims.

Read more:

Additional references:
Alabama family sues over Legionnaires’ disease they say drove them from NYC (NY Daily News)

Legionnaires’ disease (Mayo Clinic)


search previous next tag category expand menu location phone mail time cart zoom edit close