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ARTICLE ID 8154

$________ Utility liability - Strict liability - Improper use of temporary power line clamp for extended period of time - Overhead power line snaps when clamp fails and lets go, striking the plaintiff - Plaintiff suffers third-degree burns over the majority of her body - Amputation of one leg and one arm required to extensive nature of injury.

Jackson County, Missouri

The female plaintiff mother suffered catastrophic burn injuries, when struck by a falling live power line, as she was attempting to get into her vehicle during a storm. Suit was brought against the defendant utility, Kansas City Power & Light (KCP&L), its parent company Great Plains Energy, Inc., and the manufacturer of the "Pelican Clamp" that allegedly failed at the time of the accident. The plaintiff contended that the line fell due to the fact that the utility had failed to properly secure its power line.

The plaintiff was prepared to offer evidence that the plaintiff, her husband and her two children had experienced a loss of power to their home in Kansas City, Missouri, during a severe ice storm in January of ________. On February 2, ________, the plaintiff and her family were visiting the plaintiff’s sister. As they were leaving to return home, an overhead power line broke free, striking the plaintiff and her car, causing severe and extensive burn injuries. The plaintiff contended that the KCP&L power line fell because a "Pelican Clamp," which was for temporary use only, was being used improperly on an extended-term basis, creating an unstable condition that caused the line to fall.

The female plaintiff mother of two suffered third degree burns over the majority of her body, so severe that the plaintiff was forced to undergo surgical amputation of one arm and one leg. The plaintiff mother spent several months in the Kansas University Medical Center burn unit, where she suffered through several painful surgical procedures in addition to the amputations, including painful debridements and skin grafting. The plaintiff’s husband and two children were present at the time of the subject incident, and also suffered electrical burn injuries of a minor nature.

The defendants denied liability in relation to the plaintiff’s accident.

The defendant asserted that the line fell when the clamp’s grasp was weakened by an excess accumulation of ice during a severe ice storm.

All three defendants contributed to the settlement of the subject accident prior to trial for $________. The verdict was allocated as follows: $________ to the plaintiff mother; $________ to the husband; and $________ to each of the two children.

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