Written by attorney David Michael Zevan

Man Sustains Neck & Back Injury After Fall Into Uncovered Manhole

Around 11:30 one night in Centralia, Washington, a visually impaired man was carefully making his way to the store one night when he fell into an uncovered manhole. He sustained serious injuries, including injuries to his neck and back.

The man was walking to a Safeway store in his neighborhood one night. Because of his visual impairment he was using a white cane to navigate his way to the store. The man, 42, of Chehalis, was on his way to the store on July 11 of 2012 when he accidentally fell into an uncovered manhole. He did not see the manhole because of his visual impairment and could not tell that the hole was uncovered. The pit was about four feet deep and when he fell into it he struck his head on a brick, injured his hip and foot, and his foot became stuck beneath a metal pipe. Additionally, he says that he sustained injuries to his neck and back.

When the man filed an injury claim with the Washington Cities Insurance Authority, his claim was denied on the grounds that the manhole was not left uncovered. Washington Cities Insurance Authority claimed that they had re-covered the hole once the work was finished but that the cover must have been stolen later on and gone unreported. Therefore, they were not liable for the injuries that the man sustained. They said that they were working in the area in June and July but had not left the hole uncovered. They stated that if the stolen cover had not been reported to the city they could not be held responsible for the accident. Consequently, his back injury was denied.

A few months ago the man tried again. He filed a neck and back injury claim against the city on July 10 with the Lewis County Superior Court. His contention was that the continuing construction caused unsafe conditions at the southwest corner of the Southwest 11st Street and South Market Boulevard intersection by leaving the large opening uncovered. The city had failed to properly ensure that the opening was covered and that the area was safe.

In his lawsuit the man seeks compensation for pain and suffering and for his neck injury. According to the suit he injured his ankle, hip, shoulders, neck, head, and back. Additionally, he experiences sleeplessness because of the incident and now worries about being able to safely navigate the neighborhood.

If you have experienced a neck or back injury caused by an accident, contact a personal injury attorney who can help. It can be difficult at times to ascertain who is liable for injuries arising from an accident when the incident occurs on city or private property or if your claim is initially denied like this man's was. An experienced personal injury attorney may be able to help you get the compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, or other financial losses you have experienced as the result of an accident. Missouri accident victims should get in touch with an experienced Missouri personal injury attorney.

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To speak with a Missouri personal injury attorney at the Zevan and Davidson Law Firm call (314) 588-7200 or see the contact link below.

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