Water fountain repairman shocked during fix

Kelly Holleran Oct. 16, 2009, 5:00am

A man has filed suit against the company that he claims negligently manufactured a water fountain in which it left wiring exposed, causing the man to be shocked while attempting to repair the fountain.

Anthony Stevenson claims as part of his job duties for Best Western, he was assigned the task of repairing a leak in a water fountain that defendant Elkay Manufacturing Company installed at the hotel.

"While performing this task Plaintiff Anthony Stevenson sustained an electrical shock resulting in injury to his left arm," the suit states.

In addition, Stevenson incurred medical costs, experienced pain and suffering, lost wages and sustained a diminished quality of life, according to the complaint.

Elkay Manufacturing negligently designed a water fountain that left electrical components exposed, designed a faulty water reservoir that allowed water to leak onto the electrical components, failed to warn of the risk of electrical shock and designed a water shut off valve close to exposed electrical components, among other negligent acts, the complaint says.

Also named as a defendant in the suit is Madhukar V. Bhakta, who owned the St. Louis Best Western Hotel where the incident occurred.

Stevenson blames Bhakta for failing to properly install the water fountain, for failing to obtain a knowledgeable contractor, for failing to follow instructions Elkay provided that showed how to properly install the water fountain, for installing the water fountain close to an electrical outlet and for failing to implement adequate safety measures.

In the three-count suit, Stevenson is seeking a judgment of more than $150,000, plus costs.

John H. Leskera of Leskera Law Firm in Collinsville will be representing him.

Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1080.

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