Woman sues school after slipping on loose paving

| 03/04/2014

(CNS): A 56-year-old woman who broke her wrist and twisted her ankle when she slipped on loose paving on the grounds of a George Town school is suing the owners for damages. Viola Powery has filed suit against Triple C School as a result of the fall because she says the pathway on which she fell, where work was being carried out, was very badly lit and there are no warning signs or cones to indicate the hazard of loose paving stones. The incident happened in February 2011 and the woman is claiming medical costs of more than $18,000, plus damages as the court sees fit, interest and costs.

Powery states in her claim that at around 7:30pm she was at the school to attend a church function and had to make her way along a dark path. Given what she said was poor lighting and no warning cones orbarriers around the area where work was being done on the pavement, she tripped and fell, causing her injuries. Powery claims that her accident was caused by the school’s breach in its duty of care to visitors by not lighting the pathway properly and not alerting people to the pavement hazard as it was under repair.

Although someone from the school had spoken to the woman and apologized to her for the fall and asked for the medical record so he could follow up, Powery said at the time of the request they were not available. 

It is not clear in the claim filed in the Grand Court by local attorney Clyde Allen on 26 February if Powery ever supplied the records and what, if any, action the school took after the incident some four years ago.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    The normal inference for a defendant to draw on any personal injury claim issued immediately prior to the expiry of the limitation period is that it is a try on.  (By the way, for the people saying it happened four years ago, February 2011 was 3 years, 2 months ago and you have three years to issue the Writ and four months to serve it)

  2. Anonymous says:

    If she was on her way to a church function then God must have intended for it to happen.

  3. The Real Just Sayin' says:

    Surely it was the good Lords will that she was injured on his turf. Sue him.

  4. Anonymous says:

    The lady was injured, she is only sueing for the medical cost. What is wrong with that? No one knows the pain she has been through and perhaps she just was not insured enough to pay the fullcost of her medical. What is wrong with her asking Triple C to pay the difference? If it was any of you, you all would be going to social services for help. Give the woman a break nah!! She is close to retirement age and probably just don't have the money to pay the bill. Do you see Triple C giving any breaks on their school fees? They should pay the $18,000 without any further hardship on the poor lady.

  5. Anonymous says:

    this case should be throw out of window as why it takes 4 years to sue.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Three year limitation on Personal Injury? If the incident happened four years ago, then she may be out of time? BUt I see the courts have been very lenient in granting leave. some by more than a year………..I agree with the courts. Time barring should not be an issue for someone to suffer etc…………

  7. Knot S Smart says:

    When people come to my place I always tell them to be careful because if they fall down all they will get is a 'pop-ass'…

  8. Anonymous says:

    American get rich scheme=laziness!

  9. Anonymous says:

    This was not something like a malpractice by a professional.  We can trip and fall anywhere, including our own yards!  I agree with those who have said that Cayman is breeding this "sue culture" and it is becoming sickening.  Any incident for these people is just a way to seek a fast payout.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Accident or not so done got injured and business and placed used for public functions are obliged with "duty of care" for visitors. As a school they should have public liability insurance which should be covering this claim anyhow and not the school directly. As usual insurance companies are the ones to blame fighting against covering claims from their clients.

    • Anonymous says:

      Trial by Bloggers & idiots going on here. People should not just be paid because they claim they were injured. There needs to be proof, & this applies to people, businesses, Law/Courts, insurers, so don't jump to conclusions with your prejudices. No one knows all the facts. If businesses/insurers paid out for every person that said they had a loss, costs would sky rocket & businesses would close. The FBI reports "The total cost of insurance fraud (non-health insurance) is estimated to be more than $40 billion per year." The UK says "Undetected general insurance claims fraud total £2.1billion a year adding on average £50 to the annual costs of insurance". I'm not saying this case is not true, just we should mind our own business, & leave matters to those involved & not say stupidness like "someone injured, someone should pay."

  11. Anonymous says:

    One of the few spots with shade and local charm. Too bad.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Isn't this a private matter & not for gossip on CNS? Isn't this prejudicing a case? I hear that these are only one side of the facts & possibly not the actual facts, & they have presumably come from the claimant to pressurise the school. Are there no press reporting guidelines as this does seem very one sided & not in the public interest; can we expect CNS to start disclosing all Civil actions in the courts, & other such gossip?! I hope not.

    CNS, please do not encourage the Claim-for-Cash culture of the US, UK, & others. This will increase costs for businesses, charities, & people & only the fraudulent & lawyers will benefit, with many operations closing down if this occurs; genuine people are not affected, but please do not publicise eveylast "ooo I hurt myself & want money" or this will become a boom industry, & businesses & people will suffer. I bet there is more to this article than meets the eye, so do not judge. Schools (many being "not for profit") do not have a spare "$18k+" for anything, let alone for people claiming they fell over, allegedly after choosing to walk across a construction area, so please report on real news, which you are good at.

    • Anonymous says:

      It would have been a private matter had it not exposed the lack of understanding by many businesses, private and public, of duty of care and responsibility for public safety.

  13. Kilban Kolbo says:

    It was an accident. I think this sue culture is abominable and those that take advantage of it should be ashamed of themselves. 

    • Anonymous says:

      Unlike the USA, it is prohibitively expensive to initiate this type of action in the Cayman Islands.  Because of the cost to file and engage counsel, holding people accountable to everyday negliegence, or fraud, or criminal conduct is unlikely to become a trend here.  If it were easier and more affordable for private citizens to initiate this type of action, our country would grow up fast and would lead to a much higher level of care and conduct in our daily lives.  That could only be a good thing for quality of life.  On the surface, the financial ask in this case does not appear to be unreasonably punative given there was real injury and costs to the victim.  Glad someone is holding someone to task. 

      • Anonymous says:

        Because there is much less negligence in the U.S. than elsewhere, right? LOL.