Recently, a Florida court ruled on an appeal involving severe injuries that occurred in a truck parking lot. Originally, the lower court had decided that the company that owned the lot was not responsible for injuries suffered by the plaintiff. Reviewing this decision, the higher court agreed, ultimately denying the plaintiff’s appeal.
Facts of the Case
According to the opinion, the defendants in this case owned a commercial parking lot that contained crushed concrete and was used as a spot for large commercial trucks to park. Owners of these trucks could pay a monthly fee and keep their vehicles in the lot. The lease agreements said that no oil changes or engine work could be performed on the lot, but that emergency repairs were acceptable.
Despite this prohibition, truck owners would still occasionally perform mechanical repairs on the lot. On January 23, 2016, the plaintiff in this case came to the lot and noticed that others were working on trucks that day. He saw no signs prohibiting mechanical work, so he began working on his own vehicle.
The plaintiff got underneath the truck, and the driver of the truck started the ignition. Immediately, the plaintiff lost consciousness because the truck broke loose and ran over him. He suffered fractures in his legs and torso, lacerations on his head, septic shock, kidney failure, and loss of vision. His leg was also amputated as a result of the incident.
The plaintiff sued the owners of the parking lot, alleging that the lot’s owners had a duty to maintain their premises in a safe condition. The plaintiff asked the lower court to rule in his favor, and the lower court issued him an unfavorable verdict. He immediately appealed.
In reconsidering this case, the court had to think about whether the defendants did, in fact, owe a duty to the plaintiff that was injured. The court ultimately concluded that the plaintiff’s claim did not have merit, since the landowner was not ultimately responsible for the safety of the persons on the lot. It is not true, said the court, that a person owning land where people conduct repairs is responsible for the safety of those people. The landowners had done their part by prohibiting repairs on the property; they were not responsible to eliminate any risk after they had issued that prohibition.
Thus, said the court, the trial court did not make a mistake in concluding that the defendants owed no duty to the plaintiff in this case. Because of this ruling, the plaintiff’s appeal was denied.
Have You Suffered Injuries on Someone Else’s Property in Florida?
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries while on another person’s property in the state of Florida, give us a call at Friedman, Rodman, Frank & Estrada. Our attorneys are experts on personal injury and premises liability law, and we are equipped to handle your case, no matter how complex. We work on claims related to premises liability, defective products, personal injury, and medical malpractice. For a free and confidential consultation, call us today at 877-448-8585.