Picture of a Family of Four Walking on the Beach

In 2012, a 12-year-old boy and his family were camping in San Mateo County Memorial Park. The family had pitched their tents and bedded down when a 72-foot-tall tree came crashing down on the boy’s tent. Now the parents want San Mateo County to be held responsible for the injuries their child sustained.

Is San Mateo County Liable for a Child’s Amputated Leg?

After pulling the boy from under the tree, he was rushed to the hospital. Once there, doctors concluded that his right leg, part of his pelvis and right buttock would need to be amputated to save his life. Over the course of six months, the boy underwent 30 surgeries to fix his body. Fortunately, he managed to survive.

The tree that had fallen on the boy’s tent had been rotten and in danger of falling before its catastrophic collapse. However, county officials had done nothing to remove the potentially dangerous tree. For this reason, the family filed a lawsuit against San Mateo County, the contractor the county hired to inspect its campsites and a contractor with PG&E. Eventually, the lawsuit settled for $47.5 million.

Private property owners have a duty to keep visitors on their land safe. This includes maintaining a standard of safety and making sure all known hazards on the property are addressed as well as inspecting the property for hazards. Depending on the circumstances, even local governments and their independent contractors can be held responsible. However, knowing when a situation fits within the parameters of the law can be tricky.

If you have any questions or worries about premises liability after you are injured in an accident, then you should contact an attorney. The years of experience at Bohn & Fletcher, LLP allows our premises liability lawyer to focus on the details that will help your case. Our blog can also help you learn more about your rights and what protections the law provides.