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CNN: Woman loses lawsuit against Red Sox

Old 06-10-04, 12:25 PM
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CNN: Woman loses lawsuit against Red Sox

http://www.cnn.com/2004/LAW/06/10/in....ap/index.html

Court: She can cry foul, but can't sue
Woman hurt by baseball can't sue Red Sox
Thursday, June 10, 2004 Posted: 11:12 AM EDT (1512 GMT)

BOSTON, Massachusetts (AP) -- A woman who was seriously injured by a foul ball at Fenway Park has no grounds to sue because she assumed a risk by attending the baseball game, a state appeals court ruled.

The Red Sox "had no duty to warn the plaintiff of the obvious danger of a foul ball being hit into the stands," the court said Wednesday in blocking Jane Costa's personal injury lawsuit from going to trial.

The three-member panel said that even someone with scant knowledge of baseball should realize that "a central feature of the game is that batters will forcefully hit balls that may go astray from their intended direction."

Costa, who was injured in 1998, sued the team for $486,909 in lost wages and medical expenses. She had been sitting about 20 rows behind the Red Sox dugout when Boston's Darren Lewis hit the foul ball.

Costa had to undergo reconstructive surgery that installed eight plates in her face, said her lawyer, James R. Burke.

According to court documents filed by Burke, an expert calculated that the ball was traveling about 90 mph when it struck Costa about 141 feet from home plate.

"I'm more than angry. I was in critical condition," said Costa, 40. She said Red Sox management and players are "bickering over millions and millions of dollars to hit a ball, and when one of their fans get hurt, they don't care."

According to Red Sox officials, three to four dozen patrons each season are injured by foul balls.
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It's good to hear the Red Sox won. (I can't believe I just said that)
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Old 06-10-04, 12:27 PM
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Usually this problem can be avoided by keeping your eyes on the game.
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Old 06-10-04, 12:29 PM
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In fairness to the woman, Darren Lewis was at the plate. How was she supposed to know he would hit the ball?
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Old 06-10-04, 12:30 PM
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Originally posted by chrisih8u
In fairness to the woman, Darren Lewis was at the plate. How was she supposed to know he would hit the ball?
Another New and Notes gag right down the shitter.
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Old 06-10-04, 12:30 PM
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Read the back of your ticket, stupid. 3 words: assumption of risk.
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Old 06-10-04, 12:43 PM
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The only way she could've won is if Chuck Knoblauch was somehow involved.
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Old 06-10-04, 01:16 PM
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Originally posted by Groucho
Usually this problem can be avoided by keeping your eyes on the game.
So true. She was probably too busy talking on her cell phone and waving at random cameras shooting the game, trying to say hi to somebody at home.
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Old 06-10-04, 01:52 PM
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Good for the Red Sox (and all of baseball). That would have opened the floodgates to lawsuits.

I go to a ton of Padres games, and usually sit pretty close to home plate. Even down there, I'm amazed at the number of morons who actually carry on a conversation with their head (and sometimes their entire body) turned away from home plate.

Although, I can definitely see a lawsuit coming from an injured fan at the new Petco Park. The facade of all the decks is concrete, and foul balls are always ricocheting off the concrete, hitting fans who don't realize how hard the ball comes off the deck facades. So in Petco, not only do you have to watch the batter, you have to follow the flight of the ball until it is safely in the hands of another spectator.

I think it is a design flaw in the stadium, and a lawsuit might have some merit. They're gonna have to do something about the exposed concrete. Like install even MORE ads.
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Old 06-10-04, 02:20 PM
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Originally posted by Red Dog
Read the back of your ticket, stupid. 3 words: assumption of risk.
i've never read the back of a ticket to anything in my life.
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Old 06-10-04, 02:21 PM
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I agree that the Red Sox shouldn't be at fault, but she does deserve a little sympathy. If I got my face bashed in I would be pretty upset as well.
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Old 06-10-04, 03:21 PM
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Originally posted by cdollaz
I agree that the Red Sox shouldn't be at fault, but she does deserve a little sympathy. If I got my face bashed in I would be pretty upset as well.
Yes she does, and if it happened to me, I would be upset too...but I wouldn't grab some lawyer and try to sue the team. That's the root problem of so many things in our country...people who think that filing a lawsuit against someone is the only way to solve their problems.
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Old 06-10-04, 04:27 PM
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My buddy and I went to a AA game with the Round Rock Express a few weeks ago. We sat on the first base line and a line drive foul ball missed my buddy by about a foot. It was kind of funny. We looked at the ticket after the game and it did say just what you guys said. Then again the girl's family that got hit by the hockey puck and died got money if i recall. I wonder if hockey tickets have the same warning.
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Old 06-10-04, 04:43 PM
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Originally posted by BigDaddy
I wonder if hockey tickets have the same warning.
From the back of an old Capitals ticket:
WARNING - PUCKS FLYING INTO SPECTATOR AREA CAN CAUSE SERIOUS INJURY. BE ALERT WHEN IN SPECTATOR AREAS INCLUDING AFTER THE STOPPAGE OF PLAY. IF INJURED, NOTIFY USHER FOR DIRECTION TO MEDICAL STATION.

THE HOLDER OF THIS TICKET ASSUMES ALL RISKS AND DANGER OF PERSONAL INJURY AND ALL OTHER HAZARDS ARISING FROM OR RELATED TO IN ANY WAY TO the event for which this ticket is issued, whether occuring prior to, during, or after the event including specifically (but not exclusively) THE DANGER OF PUCKS AND STICKS, OTHER SPECTATORS OR PLAYERS, OR BY THROWN OBJECTS. The holder agrees the arena, the league, its officers, players, employees and agents are expressly released by the holder from claims arising from such causes.
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Old 06-10-04, 04:44 PM
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Originally posted by RoyalTea
i've never read the back of a ticket to anything in my life.
Doesn't matter, still absolves them of responsibilty.

Just like the return policy on the back of receipts. It doesn't matter if they don't tell you about it and you don't read it and then have a return rejected after the limit as you had the policy given to you.
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Old 06-10-04, 05:08 PM
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Originally posted by Josh Hinkle
Doesn't matter, still absolves them of responsibilty.
of course not.

but I don't think I've ever seen someone pull out some reading glasses and peruse the back of their ticket immediately after purchase.

they could probably throw in something like "holder agrees to be molested by team mascot." would anybody even know about that?
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Old 06-10-04, 05:18 PM
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Originally posted by RoyalTea

they could probably throw in something like "holder agrees to be molested by team mascot." would anybody even know about that?
That's why it pays to always read the fine print.
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Old 06-11-04, 12:14 AM
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I think if a ticket said that once and someone was molested by a mascot, then a lot more people would read the fine print.

Since seeing those joke lotto tickets on America's funniest Video's, I now read the fine print on every winning ticket.
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Old 06-11-04, 03:23 AM
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Taken from the back of my Angel's ticket from a few weeks ago (I was surprised how specific they get):

WARNING
Holder assumes all risk and danger incidental to the game of Baseball occurring before, during or after the actual playing of the game, including specifically (but not exclusively) being injured by thrown or broken bats and thrown or batted balls, and holder agrees that the City of Anaheim, the Angels, Moreno Family Baseball, LP, the Office of the Commissioner of Major League Baseball, the American League, The National League, participating clubs, their agents, players and other related entities or individuals are not liable for damages or personal injuries (including death) resulting from such causes.
So I guess if the jumbotron fell on her she'd have a case.
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Old 06-11-04, 09:39 AM
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Originally posted by RoyalTea

they could probably throw in something like "holder agrees to be molested by team mascot." would anybody even know about that?

No - such a clause would be void. Responsibility for intentional torts and acts of gross negligence cannot be absolved on the back of an admission ticket.
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Old 06-12-04, 12:08 AM
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Originally posted by Abranut
So I guess if the jumbotron fell on her she'd have a case.
Especially if the Jumbotron singled her out.


Get it? Singled her out.
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Old 06-13-04, 04:43 PM
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Originally posted by RoyalTea
i've never read the back of a ticket to anything in my life.
I can't believe you've never looked at the back of any tickets you've ever received.

Maybe it's out of sheer boredom as I'm standing in line, but I'll look at the ticket stub at least once a season.
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Old 06-13-04, 09:57 PM
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Originally posted by RoyalTea

but I don't think I've ever seen someone pull out some reading glasses and peruse the back of their ticket immediately after purchase.
And that's really fine. The print on the ticket doesn't change the liability one way or the other. It might discourage someone from trying to sue, but in reality the suit is either valid or it isn't, regardless of what disclaimers are included on the ticket/wall/whereever.
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