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New York City Steam Pipe Explosion

New York City Steam Pipe Explosion Exposure Lawsuits

New York City Steam Pipe Explosion | Lawsuits, Lawyers | Exposure: Injury, Burns, Damages | Asbestos

A steam pipe used by Con Edison in New York City violently exploded on July 18, 2007, injuring more than 30 people, and leaving one dead.   The force of the explosion left a huge hole in the street and sent a giant plume of 200-degree steam and debris hundreds of feet into the air.

The blast occurred at 5:47 p.m. at East 41st and Lexington Avenue.  Mayor Michael Bloomberg promptly announced that New York City was not under terrorist attack, saying instead that an aging steam pipe had exploded underground.  The Mayor characterized the blast as a “failure of our infrastructure”.  The pipe, which was installed in the NYC street in 1924, could have exploded as a result of cold water collecting around it.   The 24-inch pipe was part of a network used by the Con Edison Steam Business Unit to provide heat to 1,800 buildings in Manhattan.   New York City had been having heavy rain prior to the explosion, and if cold water collected around the pipe, it could have created a “vapor condition”, causing the steam inside to condense.  Eventually the pressure inside the pipe would have caused an explosion.   Con Edison said that the pipe involved in this incident had been inspected six weeks ago.

On July 19, the New York City Office of Emergency Management (OEM) announced that debris from the explosion had tested positive for the presence of asbestos.  Long-term exposure to asbestos can lead to respiratory ailments like lung cancer and Mesothelioma, a rare cancer of the lungs almost always linked to asbestos exposure.  In 1989, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) banned most uses of asbestos, but it is still found as insulation in older pipes and buildings.  The steam pipe involved in yesterday’s explosion was 84 years old.

While no asbestos was found in tests of air taken around the blast site, the OEM still urged people to take precautions.  The city enforced a “frozen zone” between 40th Street and 43rd Street, and between Vanderbilt and Third Avenues.  While people already in the frozen were permitted to stay, no was be allowed to enter the area while clean up took place.  The OEM cautioned anyone who was near the explosion to take precautions, including showering with soap and water, and placing any clothing they wore at the time in a plastic bag for cleaning or disposal.  People inside the frozen zone were told to keep windows shut, and set their air conditioners to a setting that would not bring in outside air.

Legal Help for Victims of New York City Steam Pipe Explosion

If you or a loved one was impacted by New York City Steam Pipe Explosion, and have yet to retain an attorney, you must act now to protect your legal rights. Please fill out our online form or call 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529) to arrange for a free consultation with one of our experienced lawyers.



 

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Con Edison’s Own Bad Repairs at Fault in Con Edison Steam Pipe Explosion, Report Says

Dec 27, 2007 | Parker Waichman LLP
Last summer’s Con Edison Steam Pipe Explosion in New York City was the result of shoddy repairs performed by the utility company.  A clump of sealant probably caused the deadly July 18th steam pipe explosion in midtown Manhattan, Consolidated Edison, said. 

Con Ed spokesman Michael Clendenin said Wednesday that the clog came from epoxy resin injected into the pipe four months before the blast.  The epoxy sealed a flange, or seam, connecting two segments of steel...

Con Edison Steam Pipe Explosion Victims Face Financial Hardship While Utility Executives Rake in Big Bucks

Sep 4, 2007 | Parker Waichman LLP, LLP
The Con Edison steam pipe explosion last July dealt a harsh financial blow to businesses forced to remain closed for many days after the blast.  Yet even as Con Edison refuses to reimburse business owners for all of the losses they incurred as a result of the steam pipe explosion, executives at the utility are doing quite well for themselves.   According to a New York Daily News article, more than a half-dozen executives make more than $1 million dollars a year.  And at...

As Con Edison Steam Pipe Explosion Probe Begins, Some Question Whether Utility Can Be Trusted To Investigate Itself

Aug 24, 2007 | Parker Waichman LLP, LLP
Con Edison will begin its probe today into the July 18 New York City steam pipe explosion that left 1 person dead and 40 others injured.  The utility announced the start of its investigation at a news conference yesterday where the 20-inch ruptured pipe was put on display.  But even as the investigation commenced, a lawyer representing victims of the blast raised doubts that Con Edison’s eventual findings could be trusted.The pipe, part of a 105-mile network that Con Edison uses...

Con Edison Steam Pipe Explosion Investigation Should Be Monitored, Says Victim's Family

Aug 16, 2007 | Parker Waichman LLP, LLP
The family of a badly burned man says that Con Edison cannot be trusted to investigate last month’s steam pipe explosion in New York City.   They are asking that an independent monitor oversee the company’s inquiry into the July 18 blast that killed one person and injured many others.  George McCullough, 21, was injured after the tow truck he was driving was swallowed up by the crater created when the 84-year-old Con Edison steam pipe exploded. ...

Con Edison Has Few Answers in Steam Pipe Explosion

Aug 8, 2007 | Parker Waichman LLP, LLP
A discussion over last month’s Con Edison steam pipe explosion in New York City turned heated at times during a hearing of the City Council’ Committee on Consumer Affairs.  Council members expressed disappointment, and sometimes anger, as a representative from the utility was unable to answer many of their questions. William Longhi, a senior vice president at Con Edison, told the assembled council members that it would be at least two months before the company would be able to...

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