A/C installer sues after platform collapses

John Suayan, Galveston Bureau Nov. 24, 2009, 8:36am

GALVESTON - After falling off a platform while installing an air conditioning system five months ago, a Chambers County man is suing a Galveston man and his business.

Lee Villejoin of Winnie says American Systembilt Homes manager Andrew Troiano lied to him about the state of the platform in question when the two men talked about a request for installation work at the defendant's property in Crystal Beach.

Villejoin's suit was filed Nov. 20 in Galveston County District Court.

According to the complaint, on June 2, defendant Troiano contacted Villejoin about installing the A/C unit, which would have also required that American Systembilt Homes build a platform.

Villejoin claims Troiano assured him that the platform was in good shape and ready to receive the new system, the suit says.

"The defendants advised the plaintiff that the platform had been properly constructed, and that it was ready for the air conditioning condensor unit to be installed, at which time the plaintiff went by and attempted to install the air conditioning unit on said platform," the original petition states.

However, according to the complaint, the platform broke away from the house and collapsed from under Villejoin, who was knocked to the ground.

The plaintiff claims to have hurt his entire body and faults the defendants for not shouldering his medical expenses.

Troiano and his company are ultimately accused of negligently hiring competent builders and improperly supervising the construction and bracing of the platform.

Villejoin seeks damages for pain and suffering, impairment, mental anguish, lost wages, and compensation for the condensor unit, which the suit argues was caused by the defendants' negligence.

He also requests a jury trial.

Lufkin attorney Joseph M. McElroy is representing the plaintiff, and Galveston County 212th District Court Judge Susan Criss is presiding over the case.

Case No. 09CV2144

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