East Harlem explosion neighbors: Our apartments are toxic

File lawsuit claiming they were let back in homes that have asbestos dust, high levels of lead
April 11, 2014 10:00AM

Residents of an East Harlem property near the site of a March 12 explosion that leveled two buildings filed suit against the city, alleging they were given the green light to return to homes covered in asbestos dust.

Tenants at 89 East 116th Street, located next door to the explosion site at 1644 Park Avenue, were evacuated following the blast but given the thumbs up to return to their apartments about a week later, attorney Andrew Carboy told the New York Daily News. In addition to asbestos dust, Carboy said the apartments also contained unsafe levels of toxic lead.

The suit, filed in Housing Court Friday, asks the city to force the landlord to thoroughly clean the inside of each apartment in the six-unit building.

The lawsuit is the second filed in connection with the explosion and ensuing collapse of the two buildings, which killed eight people. The family of one victim filed two claims seeking $20 million earlier this month. [NYDN]Julie Strickland