Alabama Workers Sue Landlords over Poisoning

June 16, 2008

Five foreign workers are suing their landlords and apartment manager in Huntsville, Ala. after four were hospitalized because of carbon monoxide poisoning.

The laborers were brought from Jamaica last fall to package DVDs in northeast Huntsville. Their attorney, Clay Martin, alleges an improperly ventilated water heater at Stone Brook Apartments led to a buildup of carbon monoxide Nov. 30.

The five workers shared the apartment, according to the Madison County Court lawsuit. Martin said one of the five had gone out for a phone card and returned to find the other four unconscious.

“If it hadn’t been for that, they would have all died,” he said.

The suit says two roommates spent two days in and out of oxygen chambers at Huntsville Hospital. Two others were airlifted to Erlanger Medical Center in Chattanooga, Tenn.

Property owners say they’ve replaced the property management company, Marcrum Management of Birmingham. An official with the company, Debbie Marcrum, did not immediately return a call seeking comment on June 11.

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