Bartender Sues Over Washington Harbour Flooding

By Darcy Spencer
|  Friday, Apr 22, 2011  |  Updated 3:36 PM EDT
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A bartender sues because of the money he and others are losing after Washington Harbour flooded Monday.

A bartender sues because of the money he and others are losing after Washington Harbour flooded Monday.

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A bartender from Farmers & Fishers Restaurant filed a $5 million lawsuit against the property manager of Washington Harbour because of the flooding there Monday.

The defendant in the class action lawsuit, MRP Realty, is being blamed for failing to raise the flood walls and prevent the flooding, which put several businesses – and employees – out of business temporarily. The bartender filed suit on behalf of himself and others who will lose money because of the flood. It attempts to recover lost wages for potentially hundreds of people who work at Washington Harbour.

“Surely, MRP had a duty to raise those gates,” said Gary Mason, who filed the class-action lawsuit. “There was plenty of warning that the Potomac River was rising. There were flood warnings that were issued, and this is something that for 30 years, the history of that complex has been done time after time.”

Not only did the flooding cause millions of dollars in damage, it also closed the businesses. According to the lawsuit, some of the businesses are losing as much as $40,000 a day.

“It’s a tremendous hardship,” Mason said. “These are individuals who many of them have been working at the restaurant for some time and they’re just about to enter peak season where they can really maximize their income.”

MRP did not comment about the lawsuit. MRP also has not commented on why the flood gates weren’t raised, but a spokeswoman said they are focused on cleanup.

“We’re just looking forward to the Harbour making everyone whole and obviously bringing us to a point where we can get back open as soon as possible,” said Tom Prescott, of Farmers & Fishers.

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