Tiptoe Through the Tulips

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Q: On the Fourth of July, I went to a fireworks display in the park.  It was sponsored by the city.  Toward the end, we began to cross the park towards our car.  A large crowd of people had spilled over from the grassy areas onto the walkways.  I had a difficult time navigating through the crowd, so I departed from the walkway and crossed what turned out to be a field of tulips.  Although overhead light fixtures are located throughout the park, they were off.  Suddenly, there was a drop from the field to the curb.  I was unable to see it.

A: Most likely, a necessary first step will be to submit a ‘notice of claim’ to the city.  Such a notice serves an important public purpose, enabling authorities to promptly investigate the site of an alleged accident and assess municipal exposure to liability.  You must describe when and where you accident took place, in as much detail as can reasonably be expected.

So long as you have given that much detail, if the city has any quarrel with the sufficiency of your notice, then it can summon you and your attorney to a standard hearing, where you give testimony.   It helps to bring photographs of the relevant portions of the curb.  You will be expected to identify the general location where you fell.

Your theory of recovery is that your injuries are due to the city’s negligent failure to properly light the park during the celebration.  You were lawfully in a park owned by the city to attend a celebration sponsored by the city.  Despite the presence of overhead lights which could have illuminated the park, the city chose not to use them even though a large crowd had gathered.

By: Scott Baron,
Attorney at Law Advertorial

The law responds to changed conditions; exceptions and variations abound. Here, the information is general; always seek out competent counsel. This article shall not be construed as legal advice.

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