Plumbing parts manufacturer sued for $1.3M over leaky toilet

Michelle Keahey, East Texas Bureau Apr. 17, 2012, 5:10am

Toilet tank connector

PLANO - A plumbing parts manufacturer is being sued for more than $1.3 million after a toilet tank connector failed and caused extensive water damage to a home in Plano.

National Surety Corp., as subrogee of Timothy A. Horner and Peggy Horner, filed the lawsuit against Interline Brands Inc. on April 10 in the Eastern District of Texas, Plano Division.

Defendant Interline Brands is a direct marketer and distributor of plumbing products.

The home at issue is located on Mahogany Run Court in Plano, and was originally built in 1983, but has undergone expansion and renovations.

According to the lawsuit, a DuraPro stainless steel toilet tank connector, which was connected to a toilet located on the second floor of the Horner's home, failed. The water ran for about 72 hours before the damage was discovered on July 25, 2011.

The plaintiff argues that the incident was caused by the failure of a threaded polyacetal coupling nut that joins the DuraPro steel toilet tank connector to the toilet. The coupling nut prematurely cracked, allowing water to leak throughout the Horner home, according to the complaint.

The defendant is accused of negligence for the inferior and defective design and manufacture of the coupling nut and for failing to warn consumers that it could result in a leak and flood.

Interline Brands is also accused of strict liability for defective product and breach of implied warranties.

The plaintiff is seeking an award of more than $1.3 million in damages, plus attorney's fees, interest, and court costs.

The insurance company is represented by Stephen M. Halbeisen of Cozen O'Connor in Dallas.

A jury trial is requested.

U.S. District Judge Ron Clark is assigned to the case.

Case No. 4:12-cv-00205

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