AUSTIN (KXAN) - Two individuals who were in the swimming pool at the W Hotel on June 10 when panels of glass fell from the structure, shattered and rained down on them filed a lawsuit against the W and Starwood Hotels and Resorts on Tuesday.
Susan Davis and Prashanth Magadi filed the complaint , represented by attorney Sean Breen, in Travis District Court. The two were injured and are still removing glass from their bodies, according to the lawsuit. Davis said she still doesn't know the extent of her injuries yet but remembers clearly that day at the pool on June 10.
"It was like this intense hail storm pretty much, said Davis. "I looked down at my arm and I could see blood pouring down from my back and I just started crying."
The plantiffs are asking that safety measures be put in place to prevent more falling glass, along with asking that covered walkways be built at the affected parts of the building. Tuesday, crews at the W closed sidewalks around the hotel and built covered walkways to began replacing 1,000 glass panels. Breen said that's still not enough.
"They need to make sure there's no a bigger problem, said Breen. "Replacing glass panels is a good start but they need to have a team of qualified people who actually do their jobs this time around before someone really is killed."
Taking the stance that the incident is "a sad example of corporations that put profits over safety and why we have a justice system to addresss it," the lawsuit details that the pair were guests of the W Hotel on June 10. It explains that they were in the pool area about 6 p.m. when two glass panels fell more than 23 stories from balconies above, down into the pool area. A guest who saw the falling glass shouted a warning, and guests "literally dived for cover," seeking protection from shards of glass that were from 1/2 inch to about one foot in diameter, with jagged edges.
The lawsuit alleges that the hotel had been warned of the problem before the June 10 incident, but failed to respond. In May, a similar incident happened at a W Hotel in Atlanta whereby two women fell out of the hotel when glass failed and fell out of their hotel room, according to the lawsuit.
Davis and Magadi state in the document that they have been traumatized by the incident and seek recovery for damages, assert negligence on the part of the hotel, and ask for reasonable compensation for their pain, disfigurement, loss of earnings, loss of earning capacity, physical impairment, medical care and expenses and mental anguish.
The lawsuit was filed the day after a second incident of falling glass happened at the W, when three panels fell to the street below on Monday . No one was injured, though cars were damaged.
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