A fatal fall at a temporary ice rink has put the city of Irvine, California on the receiving end of a $40 million wrongful death lawsuit. According to the Los Angeles Times, 49-year old Cherlynn Tang died last February from injuries sustained moments after she stepped off of the ice at a temporary rink built as a winter attraction by the city.
Last week the Orange County Register reported that Tang’s family is suing the city. “The lawsuit claims that the accident was the result of melted water that had been allowed to accumulate on the rink,” according to the Register. Media accounts say Tang slipped and tumbled backwards as she stepped off the ice, striking her head as she fell. The family also alleges that there were no medical personnel at the Great Park Ice Rink, resulting in a 20 minute delay in Tang receiving medical treatment, a time period that may have been crucial in determining whether she lived or died. Tang’s family is seeking $40 million in damages from the city.
This case is a tragic reminder of how important it is for cities and towns to take special care when setting up recreational activities that, while fun, are not necessarily in synch with their surroundings. Irvine’s temporary ice rink was located inside an unused airplane hanger which was open at both ends to the warm Southern California air. At the heart of the Tang family’s suit, according to the Register, is the allegation that the city did not take adequate precautions to protect users of an ice rink in an environment where ice was far from natural.
When a loved one dies in circumstances like these, making immediate contact with an experienced personal injury lawyer is an essential first step in the fight to protect your rights. If a situation like this were to arise here in Oregon, a Portland wrongful death attorney would be able to advise you and other family members of the best way to proceed in light of the particular circumstances of your case.
Obtaining justice in the wake of an Oregon wrongful death is often a struggle. When the odds all appear to be stacked against you, an Oregon wrongful death and personal injury lawyer can be one of your most important allies.
Orange County Register: Lawsuit: Unsafe ice rink led to Great Park death
Los Angeles Times: Irvine mother dies after falling at Great Park ice rink