The families of the three U.S. citizens who died from carbon monoxide poisoning while staying at an Airbnb unit in Mexico in November are suing the company for failing to require hosts to install detectors for the deadly gas.
Jennifer Marshall, Freida Florence, and Ceola Hall, the mothers of the three victims, told NBC News they are suing Airbnb for failing to require carbon monoxide detectors. The lawsuit asks Airbnb to require its hosts to install detectors in all its properties.
Airbnb currently hosts 4 million vacation rentals on its worldwide platforms, none of which are required to provide carbon monoxide detectors.
“I cannot process in my mind why my daughter is not here today… There is no excuse. There is no excuse. It cost $30. I would have bought it for her if I had known,” Florence told NBC.
The women’s attorney, L. Chris Stewart, said the group died from carbon monoxide poisoning caused by a malfunctioning water heater. Airbnb currently regulates guns and parties, so requiring carbon monoxide alarms should be a company policy to keep customers safe, Stewart said.
However, Airbnb has given away more than 200,000 carbon monoxide and smoke detectors to hosts for free through the “global detector program.”
The company also launched its “Safe Summer” campaign together with the Secretariat of Comprehensive Risk Management and Civil Protection of Mexico City to expedite smoke and carbon monoxide detectors shipments to Airbnb hosts in Mexico.
“This is a terrible tragedy, and our thoughts are with the families and loved ones as they grieve such an unimaginable loss. Our priority right now is supporting those impacted as the authorities investigate what happened, and we stand ready to assist with their inquiries however we can,” an Airbnb spokesperson told Entrepreneur Magazine.