A Calabasas man and his wife are suing the city and several businesses, saying he acquired Valley Fever during the excavation of soil for a highway improvement project and the construction of new condominiums.
The Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit filed Monday by Frederick and Terri Brown names the development firms Calabasas Blue LLC, Blue Marble Development LLC; Excel Paving Co. and general contractor Patriot Enterprises Inc. as co-defendants and seeks unspecified damages.
The proximity of the couple’s home to some of the construction exposed Frederick Brown to Valley Fever, leaving him vulnerable to a “lifelong, crippling and potentially fatal disease,” according to the suit, which alleges dangerous condition of public property, negligence and loss of consortium.
Calabasas City Attorney Scott Howard could not be immediately reached for comment.
Valley fever is a disease caused by a fungus that enters the body through the lungs.
The two projects at issue in the lawsuit are the widening of Las Virgenes Road by the city that was completed in the summer of 2017, and the Paxton Calabasas 78-unit condominium project that began construction in August 2015 and is still being built. The city of Calabasas reviewed and approved the condominium construction, the suit states.
The soil excavation needed for the highway improvement work and the condominium construction caused Frederick Brown and other residents to become exposed to excessive amounts of dust, according to the complaint.
“Defendants knew, or should have known, that performing construction projects and activities that included … grading, earth-moving and excavation, where the prevalence of spore-laden soils was a known hazard, posed an unacceptable risk of irreparable harm to them,” the suit alleges.
In addition to exposing Frederick Brown to harm, the city and the businesses “failed to implement or follow even rudimentary measures to protect (Brown) from the disease,” according to the complaint.
–City News Service
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