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Windermere fire victims reach multi-million-dollar settlement

Posted on 11 December 2014

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Dozens of former residents of the Windermere Court apartments at 48th and Walnut, which burned down in early 2011, have scored a tentative multi-million-dollar victory in a class action lawsuit against the building’s owners.

The suit was filed soon after the devastating January 2011 fire and claimed that the building’s owners and management company failed to maintain smoke detectors, fire alarms and the four-story building’s sprinkler system. The suit was filed against owners David, Sam and Aron Ginsberg, all from New Jersey, and the management company that oversaw maintenance of the building.

The residents’ attorney, Thomas More Marrone, said in a statement that residents were in tears in the court hallways when they heard the news of the proposed $4.75 million settlement, which was reached three days after the civil trial began.Fire-address-300x225

Most of the residents fled the four-story building with very few possessions and were barred from re-entering their apartments, prompting weeks of protests following the fire. The building was demolished in April 2011.

Before the demolition, residents were told they could request belongings from their apartments, but they had to fit into two garbage bags.

The fire prompted an outpouring of support from West Philly residents, businesses and non-profits, many of whom organized fundraisers and collected clothing for the more than 100 displaced Windermere residents. Animal relief organizations also worked around the clock to help save many of the pets that didn’t make it out of the building.

Here is an interview days after the fire with one of the plaintiffs named in the case, J.B. Farley, on the quick demolition of the building.

Here is video of the fire:

Mike Lyons

1 Comments For This Post

  1. Strongforu Says:

    I hope the victime actually get some of the money after the feds take out taxes and the lawyers take their cut!

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