According to a report by ABC news, a college student in West Palm Beach, Florida drove into a sinkhole while trying to make a turn in a fast food restaurant’s parking lot. The student wasn’t injured. He also wasn’t the first to fall prey to the sinkhole. The story also details that the driver of an 18 wheeler also got stuck in the sink hole, but his vehicle was large enough to prevent him from falling in completely.
The driver, who happened to be a law student, was driving into the parking lot to turn around. He couldn’t see the hole, as the caution signs and tape that had been installed after the semi had gone in the hole had blown away overnight. The driver was driving a vehicle that was low to the ground, making it even harder to see.
It took a tow truck to get the vehicle out of the sinkhole. The report claims that the sinkhole was a whopping 8 feet deep.
Not every premise liability claim involves a physical injury to the victim. As is the case in this story, the victim sometimes ends up suffering property damage. There are no reports as to whether the driver of the vehicle intends to sue for damages or not but this is a case where you would definitely want to speak with an attorney, whether or not you were injured.
Commercial establishments are responsible for the safety of the people they invite on their property. In a case such as this, it might not make any difference that the hazard was flagged initially. It wasn’t flagged at the time and, depending upon what an attorney thought of the matter upon review of the situation, there might be an opportunity to file a lawsuit for damages in a case such as this. Even though there are no physical injuries reported in the story, the driver’s car would certainly need a lot of work after falling into an 8-foot deep hole, if it was repairable at all.
Talking to a Lawyer
If you’ve suffered property damage or a personal injury on a commercial property, the time to talk to a lawyer is always right away. There are limitations on how long you have to file a lawsuit in such cases and the more quickly you report the incident the better.
An attorney who takes cases like these usually works on contingency. This means they don’t get paid if you don’t win via settlement or jury award. There’s no risk in talking to an attorney and, if you have a good claim, you may end up being compensated for your losses that resulted from the property owner’s negligence.