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Chicago hotel sued for wrongful death after tourist’s illness

Chicago hotel sued for wrongful death after tourist’s illness

Date: November 20, 2012

The JW Marriott hotel in downtown Chicago is facing a wrongful death lawsuit filed on behalf of a visitor who died a month after eating at the hotel this summer. The lawsuit accuses hotel officials of allowing its lobby fountain and other facilities to become infected with Legionnaires’ disease, fatally sickening the victim’s life.

According to the wrongful death lawsuit, which was filed in Cook County Circuit Court on Nov. 1, the deceased man, 66, was a resident of Ireland who was in Chicago with his wife to celebrate their 40 wedding anniversary. On July 27, the couple went to the JW Marriott to eat at the restaurant. While there, according to the lawsuit, the man inhaled water vapor that was coming off a fountain in the lobby.

The water in the fountain was later found to contain Legionella bacteria, along with the men’s and women’s locker rooms and the whirlpool in the spa. The infection continued in the fountain until about Aug. 3. Sometime after the meal at JW Marriott, the man became ill, suffering “great conscious pain,” the suit said. His condition deteriorated and he passed away on Aug. 29.

The suit accuses JW Marriott and its parent company, Marriott International, of failing to take “appropriate control measures” to keep the fountain free of bacteria and disease. For example, JW Marriott should have applied biocide to the fountain and maintain a proper water temperature.

Besides Marriott International, the wrongful death suit names Prime Group Inc., the company that owns or operates the JW Marriott, as a defendant.

Source: Chicago Tribune, “Suit blames hotel for death from Legionnaires’ disease,” Jennifer Delgado, Nov. 2, 2012

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