Insurer sues to recover flood damages

John Suayan, Galveston Bureau Apr. 9, 2012, 10:00am

Scott Carpenter of Carpenter & Schumacher PC in Plano.

GALVESTON - State Farm Lloyds Insurance Co. has filed suit against Space Flex International LLC and Sealed Unit Parts Co. Inc. in response to apparent water damage to a League City policyholder's home.

Court papers filed March 23 in Galveston County Court at Law No. 3 explain that the defendants designed, manufactured and marketed a defective Aqua-Fresh WF285 Ultimate Series Refrigerator Replacement Water Filter which Leo Langston owned.

According to the original petition, the product in question malfunctioned on May 30, 2010, and set off a "sudden, uncontrollable" release of water into the residence.

An engineer inspected the water filter and determined that failure occurred at the welded junction between the sidewall and end cap, indicating insufficient weld integrity.

"The failure mechanism was identified as a creep rupture," the suit says. "The mode of failure was consistent with design and manufacturing problems which led to stress concentrations that left the filter unable to withstand the internal pressure."

It adds a safer alternative design existed that would have prevented or significantly reduced the risk of the occurrence in question without negatively affecting the product's utility.

The insurer says it compensated Langston for the covered damages he incurred in the amount of $5,590.97 in accordance with his homeowner's insurance policy and plans to recoup the money from the respondents.

The plaintiff is represented by Carpenter & Schumacher P.C.

Galveston County Court at Law No. 3 Judge Christopher Dupuy is presiding over the case.

Cause No. 67,205

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