Federal officials have given the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) (The Projects) up to 20 years to get excess lead presence removed from the Bronx River Houses, where nearly every apartment tested was found to have lead contamination. According to a report in the New York Post, a whopping 98 percent of tests for lead in units at the Bronx River Houses came back positive. The 2018 lawsuit brought by federal prosecutors in Manhattan against NYCHA identified three complexes – Bronx River Houses, Manhattan’s Harlem River Houses and the Williamsburg Houses in Brooklyn – with widespread lead contamination.
No Reason Given for Delay
But while January’s settlement agreement set a five-year deadline to remove lead from apartments and common areas at the Harlem River and Williamsburg complexes, it gave NYCHA 20 years to clean up Bronx River’s 1,246 apartment units. Residents at Bronx River say they are upset that NYCHA is taking its time with this complex and that their decision to do so is lacking a clear reason. Advocates say while even five years is too long to get rid of lead in apartments, 20 years is unacceptable.
They are also questioning NYCHA’s reasoning in taking its time with this apartment complex while repairing the other two with similar levels of contamination much sooner. Last month, NYCHA announced that it would spend $88 million over the next two years and equip contractors with advanced detectors to inspect all 135,000 apartments that have previously never been checked for lead. Officials said it would be the first systematic sweep for lead in public housing buildings or the Projects, which would give a definitive list of which apartments are contaminated with lead.
Problems at Bronx River Houses
Bronx River Houses is a low-income public housing project in the Soundview section of The Bronx in New York City. The development comprises nine 14-story buildings with 1,260 apartments, completed Feb. 28, 1951. The development spans about 14 acres and is bordered by East 174th Street, Harrod, and Bronx River Avenues. About 3,025 residents live in this development. The Bronx River Addition consists of two senior-only buildings, 6 and 12 stories tall with 225 apartments. This addition was completed in February 1966.
Residents at Bronx River Houses were also concerned about water quality in January when two tenants became ill with Legionnaires’ disease over the past year. The New York City Department of Health said there were two cases at the Bronx River Houses. Legionnaires’ disease is a type of pneumonia that is caused by the Legionella bacterium, which tends to grow in warm water. Lead inspections at the development have repeatedly shown contamination at the Bronx River Houses as well. However, so far, no repairs or lead removal has occurred in this development, raising serious concerns among the more than 3,000 people who live there.
Filing a Lead Poisoning Lawsuit
Whether you live in privately owned buildings or the Projects as a tenant, you have the right to a safe and healthy environment. If you live in public or private housing and your child has been diagnosed with high blood lead levels, then you may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit against the NYCHA (the Projects) or private landlords for damages.
The victim and/or the family can seek compensation for damages including medical expenses, cost of diagnostic tests, permanent injuries, lost income and benefits, disabilities, past and future pain and suffering, etc. A knowledgeable New York City lead poisoning lawyer will be able to help you file the lawsuit and compile the evidence that is required to hold the agency accountable for its negligence (carelessness).
How an Experienced Lawyer Can Help
If your child has been affected by lead poisoning, the experienced New York personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Kenneth A. Wilhelm can help you better understand your legal rights and options, and also fight hard to recover just compensation for you.
Our firm recovered $1,162,500 for a child who suffered lead poisoning from paint in her apartment. The child’s injuries were subtle and difficult to recognize. We recovered $162,500 above the $1 million dollar total insurance policy in this case. Despite the judge’s efforts to settle the case for $950,000, we fought hard and recovered $162,500 more than the insurance full policy of one million dollars.
Please contact us TOLL FREE 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-WORK-4-YOU (1-800-967-5496). WE CAN EVEN COME TO YOU. There is no attorneys’ fee unless we recover money for you. We can also help with personal injury and medical malpractice cases in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, or Florida. If you have been seriously injured in any of the 50 U.S. states, please call us and we will try to help you with your case.
Other TOLL FREE phone numbers for us are:
1-800-RADIO-LAW, 1-888-WYPADEK, OR 1-800-LAS-LEYES
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