In the first case, Metke v. Harem Irving v. Cybor Fire Protection Inc, the plaintiff, a 69-year-old woman fractured her leg after attempting to step over a “trickle of water” and wound up slipping and falling, later claiming that there must have been ice underneath the water. After she fell, fracturing her leg and requiring surgery, the plaintiff filed suit against Harem Irving, the owner of the property. Harem Irving sued Cybor Fire Protection, for testing the sprinkler system early that morning. Prior to trial, the defense had been granted summary judgment, which was later overturned by the appellate court thereby necessitating a trial.
Plaintiff requested $225,000 at the end of a jury trial for past medical bills of including approximately $100,000 in past medical bills and past and future pain and suffering. The trial lasted 4 days and included seven witnesses, including two treating physicians. For the defense, Susan Bledsoe of Daniel P. Costello & Associates fought zealously to deny fault and prove that Cybor Fire Protection Inc. did not create a hazardous condition as the plaintiff saw the trickle of water, knowingly assumed the risk by stepping over it and could have taken a safer alternative path. The jury properly returned a verdict of not guilty in favor of the defense.
The second case involved a slip and fall on ice in a parking lot. Plaintiff alleged a variety of significant and permanent injuries to his shoulder as a result of the fall. After completing written discovery and the relevant depositions, Partner Andrew Smith, with the assistance of Associate Attorney Douglas Persoon, filed a summary judgment motion on the basis that the icy condition qualified as either a natural accumulation of ice in an active parking lot or constituted an open and obvious condition. After briefing and hearing, the Court entered an order granting the summary judgment motion in Defendant’s favor.