Our law firm has filed a lawsuit against Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc. a Tennessee company alleging contaminated water at The Guest House at Graceland caused our client, Mr. J., to contract Legionnaires’ disease, pneumonia from breathing in water mist containing cells of Legionella bacterium.
Attorney Fred Pritzker along with local counsel, filed the suit in the Circuit Court of Shelby County, Tennessee, Thirtieth Judicial District at Memphis (Case: CT-003025-17 Div. III). A jury trial was demanded.
People with Legionnaires’ Disease Stayed at The Guest House at Graceland
On June 4, 2017, our client, Mr. J., checked into The Guest House at Graceland located at 3600 Elvis Presley Boulevard, Memphis Tennessee. He was with his wife and other family members. They stayed there for one night.
By June 9, 2017, Mr. J. was suffering from symptoms of Legionnaires’ disease, including extreme fatigue. He was later diagnosed and spent over a week in intensive care. He incurred substantial medical expenses, suffered a loss of wages, endured significant pain and suffering, and continues to suffer from pronounced weakness. Other members of his family developed symptoms consistent with Pontiac Fever, a milder, flu-like illness also caused by breathing in Legionella.
The Shelby County Health Department began investigating an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease cases in May of 2017. By July 7, 2017, it had identified five people sickened in the outbreak, including Mr. J. The suit alleges that all five of these people had visited The Guest House at Graceland before developing Legionnaires’ disease. There are now six confirmed cases, according to the health department.
The Hotel Had a Responsibility to Prevent Legionella Contamination
Hotels have been the source of outbreaks of Legionnaires’ disease, also called Legionellosis. This is because they have several water systems that are susceptible to contamination with Legionella bacteria. Water systems at The Guest House at Graceland include a fountain, pool and hot tub.
The lawsuit alleges that Elvis Presley Enterprises knew or should have known that its water systems could become contaminated with Legionella bacteria if not properly maintained. According to the suit, the company “did not implement a water management plan sufficient to protect the guests it housed at its hotel known as The Guest House at Graceland.”
In a CDC report released in June of 2016, the agency stated that most outbreaks involved inadequate water disinfectant levels and temperatures in the optimal range of Legionella growth.
Lawsuit Alleges Elvis Presley Enterprises Was Negligent
Elvis Presley Enterprises owed a duty to all its guests to keep the rooms and water systems free of harmful pathogens like Legionella. The lawsuit alleges that the company breached that duty by
- Inadequately treating its water supply;
- Failing to adequately analyze and assess the safety of its water supply;
- Failing to adequately train and instruct its employees, contractors, and others acting on its behalf regarding the safe operation and management of its water supply; and
- Ignoring guidelines for safe water maintenance.
Because of this, the company created the dangerous conditions that resulted in the presence of Legionella at the Guest House at Graceland and failed to timely and properly remedy the condition and warn its guests, the suit alleges.
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