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September 3, 2010

Illegally Dumped Metals Cause Contamination

Acknowledgement to Great American

A dental practice operating within a large commercial/ residential condo building illegally dumped metals, including mercury, down various drains within their rented office unit for several years. The dumping was discovered during a routine state inspection and an environmental assessment company was hired by the building owner to assess the extent of the contamination.

An extensive remediation program was undertaken for two years which required the removal and replacement of a substantial amount of the buildings 1st floor plumbing. Additionally, indoor air quality sampling and testing was performed over this time period to assess the potential for mercury contamination within the entire habitational and non-habitational areas of the building. Since mercury was found throughout the building, many of the tenants filed suit against the dental practice and the building owner for 3rd party bodily injury due to exposure to volatilized mercury.…

August 13, 2010

Alleged Negligent Laboratory Analysis

Acknowledgement to XL Environmental

An XL insured laboratory contracted with a general contractor (GC) to provide analysis of mold spores taken from a hospital mold remediation and reconstruction project. Following a failed remediation project, the hospital sued the GC alleging various errors in the GC’s project services. The GC filed a third-party action against our insured for $4,500,000, alleging that failures on the project resulted from the insured’s acts, errors or omissions in its laboratory analysis of the mold spores.

XL’s environmental claims counsel retained local defense counsel to defend the insured in the litigation. XL’s environmental claims counsel and defense counsel worked closely with the insured to investigate the allegations. A determination was made that the insured had used an incorrect procedure for the analysis of the mold spores. However, defense counsel was able to successfully argue that the insured’s alleged negligence did not result in any substantial damages to the GC or hospital.

At a subsequent mediation, the claim was settled against our insured for a fraction of the claimed damages. XL paid $350,000 under the insured’s Professional and Contractor’s Pollution Legal Liability Policy to resolve the claim on the insured’s behalf.…