Consolidated Edison Files Notice of Claim against New York City Over July 18, 2007, Steam Pipe Explosion

Consolidated Edison has filed a Notice of Claim with the City of New York alleging that leaking cold water caused the steam pipe explosion that occurred on July 18, 2007, near the intersection of Lexington Avenue and East 41st Street in Manhattan. The filing of a notice of claim is a prerequisite to instituting a lawsuit.

Con Ed’s notice of claim was apparently filed just before the expiration of the 90-day statutory time limit. One wonders whether Con Ed has filed the notice of claim based upon the results of the investigation it has been conducting into the explosion, or whether Con Ed is, as it professes, merely filing as a precautionary measure. We’ll know soon enough.

Meanwhile, a lawsuit for the wrongful death of the one fatality from the explosion was instituted this week. In light of Con Ed’s filing of a notice of claim, the City of New York is likely to be added to lawsuits that have already been filed where Con Ed is the only defendant. (Hopefully notices of claim have been filed already, otherwise, since the 90-day period has passed, the City cannot be sued unless a court order permits the late filing of a notice of claim.)

Following-up on an earlier blog, in response to Con Ed’s application to the Justices of the Litigation Coordinating Panel in Supreme Court, New York County, that they accept this matter for the scheduling and completion of pre-trial matters, the court has issued a stay of all discovery and established a schedule to allow all interested parties to submit papers setting forth their position with respect to the application.

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