NY couple sues neighbour for $500K over ’second-hand smoke’

January 17th, 2011 - 2:30 pm ICT by ANI  

New York, Jan 17 (ANI): A Manhattan couple has sued their cigar-smoking neighbour for 500,000 dollars, claiming that his second-hand smoke is making their lives hell.

Russell and Amanda Poses, who filed a lawsuit against Harry Dale in a Manhattan Supreme Court, said the odours and smoke coming from Dale’s residence are so strong that they were practically evicted from their Upper East apartment, reports the New York Post.

“It’s pungent enough that you can’ eat dinner. I’ve got two children, and I couldn’t let them in their own playroom,” said Russell, a Wall Street equities trader.

Meanwhile, Dale said he takes most of his smoke breaks outside, uses three air cleaners and even hired a specialist to try to seal off his apartment from Poses.

“He says his son has asthma,” he said of Russell.

“The amount of second-hand smoke that child has been exposed to from my cigars is minimal. The exhaust from the city buses is worse,” he added.

The couple said the whole family was losing sleep and suffering from headaches, chest pains and respiratory ailments from the second-hand smoke and asked for 500,000 dollars in damages for each member of the family.

Though New York has already banned people from smoking in restaurants, bars and at work, there is no law against smoking inside an apartment.

However, courts have ruled in the past that second-hand smoke is a serious problem if it leeches into another apartment or impacts the neighbours, said John Churneftsky, the Poses’ lawyer.

“It constitutes a nuisance and a trespass, and when you have a nuisance or a trespass, the court will order that nuisance remedied,” he added. (ANI)

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