The Contra Costa Times reports that a toddler has died after falling into an irrigation canal near Bayliss, California. According to the report, the young boy fell into the Glenn County Canal and was in the water for nearly 10 minutes before his mother was able to pull him out and begin CPR.
Emergency responders were initially able to restore a faint heartbeat and the boy was taken to a Sacramento area hospital. He subsequently died. The sheriff's department notes, "We don't suspect negligence."
Whenever a tragic accident occurs on public property the question of safety arises and whether adequate measures were taken to protect against dangers. Generally, property owners have a duty to maintain their property in a reasonably safe manner. This means they must take measures to eliminate dangers they know of or should have been aware of or adequately warn of such dangers.
A warning may be a simple as placing a sign setting forth the potential hazard however, if a sign is not placed in a manner that is visible or sufficiently descriptive, the warning may not be adequate. Similarly, in many instances affirmative steps must be taken to protect against known dangers.
Premises liability cases can occur on any type of property and may involve any type of danger - from an open canal to a spilled liquid at a grocery store, the lack of a fence around a public pool, or the failure to warn of a dangerous construction zone. If an unreasonably dangerous condition exists and you are harmed as a result, it may be possible to recover compensation for your injuries.
Here, it is unknown how the accident occurred and how the boy was able to get into the irrigation canal. Many times, simple steps such as placement of a barrier or fence may be able to avert a tragedy.
For more information, or if you have been injured as the result of a dangerous condition on public property, contact the experienced Sacramento premises liability lawyers at the Law Offices of Frederick J. Sette for a free consultation.
As the result of negligence in allowing a wild-fire to burn unattended, the San Jose Mercury News reports that a former a jury has found a former schoolteacher and her relatives responsible for damages caused by one of Santa Clara County's biggest wildfires. The premises accident occurred after Margaret Pavese illegally began burning paper plates in a 55-gallon metal barrel. The Lick fire burned out of control, damaging 47.760 acres, destroying four homes and 20 buildings in the Henry Coe State Park Area. Also destroyed in the fire were papers a San Jose man - Dan Straus - had inherited from Albert Einstein, including calculations jotted down on onionskin and an envelope.
Pavese was sued for negligence as the result of allowing a dangerous condition to exist.
The concept of "premises liability" provides that owners or occupiers of land have a responsibility to keep their property free from dangerous conditions they knew of or should have known of and/or take reasonable precautions to warn of the unreasonably dangerous conditions.
Here, the jury applied a similar theory to determine that despite Margaret accepting sole responsibility for the accident, the duty to exercise reasonable care and the knowledge of the dangerous conditions created liability on behalf of the other family members. As noted by a representative - "Margaret lit the match, but we were able to convince the jury that the Pareses were all negligent. We really felt we lost a historical treasure."
Because each one of the members were found in some way to be responsible for the danger created, each of the individuals were found to be partly at fault.
Negligence involves the concepts of duty and responsibility. Here, where a duty is found to exist on one party, harm for damage caused by the failure to reasonably comply with that duty may be compensable.
For more information, or if you believe you have been harmed through the negligence of another, please contact the dedicated Sacramento personal injury and negligence attorneys at the Law Office of Frederick J. Sette.