Dubai World sued in $337.5m Legionnaire’s case

Guests claim they contracted disease at Dubai World-owned Las Vegas hotel
Dubai World sued in $337.5m Legionnaire’s case
CityCenter Holdings is a joint venture between MGM Resorts and Dubai World
By Claire Ferris-Lay
Thu 25 Aug 2011 10:57 AM

Dubai World and MGM Resorts, joint owners of the Las Vegas CityCentre complex, are being sued for $337.5m by eight former hotel guests who claim they were exposed to legionnaire’s disease during their stay.

Six of the guests have said they were treated for the disease while staying at the Aria Resort & Casino, located in the CityCenter complex, built by state-backed Dubai World, AP reported.

“What we are looking at is the management of the water plan,” attorney Sam Mirkovich told the newswire. “There were multiple instances of the Legionella bacteria in the water system.”

MGM Resorts has denied negligence but notified guests they may have been exposed to the disease between June 21 and July 4.

“While it is not our policy to comment on litigation, we have been very careful to communicate with each of our guests and reimburse them fairly for any legitimate medical expenses,” said Alan Feldman, executive spokesperson for MGM Resorts.

Six of the plaintiffs said they were treated for the potentially fatal disease, which is found in air conditioning systems and other wet areas. Southern Nevada Health District has confirmed that the six Aria guests recovered after treatment for the disease in July.

The details of the case emerged a week after reports that MGM Resorts would be forced to demolish a 27-storey tower that was to anchor its $8.5bn CityCenter Aria Resorts & Casino after experts said there was a risk it could collapse in the event of an earthquake.

Officials and engineering experts in Las Vegas had expressed concerns that the 27-storey hotel and condominium Harmon Tower was not structurally safe and halted construction work.

Dubai World holds a 9.5 percent stake in MGM and is a joint partner in the CityCenter casino project.

MGM this month reported better than expected second-quarter earnings, as revenue rose 17 percent to $1.81bn, beating the $1.61bn analysts forecast by analysts.

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