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ARTICLE ID 6232

$________ p 7 3 Negligent maintenance of automatic supermarket door - Elderly plaintiff knocked down by suddenly-closing door - Fractured hip.

New York County, N.Y.

The elderly female plaintiff contended that the defendants supermarket and its maintenance company negligently failed to provide the required sensor in the threshold of the automatic door, which slid opened and closed sideways. The plaintiff contended that as a result, the door closed too quickly on the elderly plaintiff, knocking her to the ground and causing her to suffer a fractured hip.

The plaintiff’s expert engineer maintained that his examination of the door two months post-accident, revealed a small hole which was designed to contain a sensor, but that there was no sensor and, instead, the hole was filled over with putty. The plaintiff’s expert asserted that applicable ANSI standards required the presence of such a sensor, to prevent the automatic door from closing while someone is in its path. The plaintiff could not testify as to the specific facts surrounding the accident, due to dementia. The plaintiff’s orthopedist and internist testified as to the fractured hip injury suffered in the fall, which required an open reduction procedure and the insertion of hardware which remains. The plaintiff maintained that she will suffer permanent intermittent pain and loss of mobility.

@TITLEHD = DEFENDANTS’ CONTENTIONS The defendant supermarket contended that the door and the doorway were safe, irrespective of the absence of a sensor. The defendant argued that the doorway had been present in this condition for over 25 years and that there were only to or three similar incidents over that extended period of time. The defendant supermarket further argued that the doorway pre-dated ANSI requirements for inclusion of the sensor advocated by the plaintiff and that the door was, therefore, exempt. The defendant supermarket alternatively argued that if any deficiencies did exist, they should have bee addressed by the defendant maintenance company. The maintenance company denied receiving any complaints regarding the door. The jury found the defendant supermarket 57% negligent, the maintenance company 43% negligent and awarded the plaintiff $________. including $________ for past pain and suffering, $________ for future pain and suffering and $________ for past medical expenses.

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