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Civil Plaintiff

Wrongful Death Lawsuit Filed Against Alpine Motel Apartments

LAS VEGAS, Nevada ­– The sister-in-law of Tracy Ann Cihal, a 57-year-old widow who tragically died last month while trying to escape from the blazing inferno at the Alpine Motel Apartments complex, has filed the first wrongful death lawsuit in Clark County District Court against Las Vegas Dragon Hotel LLC, the owner and operator of the Alpine Motel Apartments, and its managing member Adolfo Orozco for negligence and wrongful conduct that led to Mrs. Cihal’s horrific death. Plaintiff is represented in the case by attorneys Rahul Ravipudi, Ian Samson and Adam Ellis of Panish Shea & Boyle LLP as well as Ben Wilson Esq. of Morgan & Morgan P.A., pending Pro Hac Vice application approval.

Joint Statement from Co-counsel Rahul Ravipudi of Panish Shea & Boyle LLP and Ben Wilson of Morgan & Morgan: 

“The injuries and death of our client and the other victims of this fire are inexcusable — and we believe, preventable. The owners and managers of the Alpine – and other properties around Las Vegas – appear to have been far more concerned about taking money from their tenants than they were about their safety. It is inconceivable that residents of the Alpine were forced to endure the conditions of this complex. As alleged in our complaint, the most basic, minimum standards of living and habitability were denied to our client and other victims of this tragedy. We will work to hold these defendants accountable for their pure indifference to human life and safety.” 

Affectionately known as “Mama Bear” by members of her Downtown Las Vegas community, decedent Tracy Ann Cihal resided in a first-floor apartment at the Alpine Motel Apartments – a 42-unit complex owned, operated and managed by Defendants. On December 21, 2019, Mrs. Cihal and her neighbors were forced to flee their home before dawn as it erupted in flames, reportedly sparked by a cooking stove used as a makeshift heater in the absence of an adequate heating system. With no fire sprinklers or alarm to warn of the impending danger, residents attempted to evacuate the three-story complex to safety. Many found that the rear exit door had been barricaded and were trapped in the building. Others resorted to jumping from second and third story windows to escape the flames. In all, 13 people were seriously injured and six (6) others – including Tracy Ann Cihal — lost their lives, making it the deadliest fire in Las Vegas’ history.

Plaintiff alleges Mrs. Cihal’s death was the direct and proximate result of Defendants’ failure to provide its tenants with safe and habitable living conditions — including essential services and/or utilities such as heating – and failed to comply with all statutory requirements and codes governing the maintenance of rental apartment units including an adequate fire suppression system, a fire alarm system, smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, or safe means of egress — all in violation of applicable fire codes in the City of Las Vegas. As a result of Defendants’ negligence, the building was in an unsafe and dangerous condition so that instead of protecting the tenants, it actually exposed them to an unreasonable risk of harm and exacerbated, instead of mitigated, the damages caused by the fire. 

ABOUT PANISH SHEA & BOYLE LLP

Panish Shea & Boyle LLP is a nationally recognized personal injury law firm representing plaintiffs in catastrophic injury, wrongful death, product liability, mass torts/class action, sexual abuse/assault and business litigation cases. Firm attorneys have obtained some of the most significant verdicts and settlements for plaintiffs in U.S. history and are repeatedly recognized for excellence by other trial attorneys, legal organizations and publications nationwide. The firm is ranked by U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers® as a “Tier 1” Firm – the highest ranking a firm can receive –  in the areas of Plaintiffs Mass Tort Litigation/Class Actions, Plaintiffs Personal Injury Litigation and Plaintiffs Product Liability Litigation, and is recognized as being among the top Plaintiff’s law firms in the country by the National Law Journal

ABOUT THE LAW FIRM OF MORGAN & MORGAN

The largest contingency law firm in the United States, Morgan & Morgan has recovered more than $5 billion for 200,000 clients. The firm has more than 500 attorneys across 54 offices in 14 states. With the support of 2,000 employees, Morgan & Morgan’s attorneys represent clients in a wide range of practice areas: national mass torts and class actions, personal injury, workers’ compensation, medical malpractice, labor and employment, mesothelioma, and product liability lawsuits, among others.

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