Cagle Law Firm
Attorney Zane Cagle

Posted on March 2nd, 2009,
by Zane Cagle

Court Rules City is Partially At Fault for Deck Collapse Injuring 80 People

Posted on March 2nd, 2009 by Zane Cagle

After losing its appeal to the Montana Supreme Court, the city of Polson, Montana is forced to accept partial responsibility of a local bar and grill’s deck collapse that injured 80 people.

In July 2004, partygoers gathered on the deck of the establishment and witnesses were shocked when it collapsed sending more than 80 people crashing into a concrete slab below. An investigation concluded that a key support beam was improperly installed and played a major role in the collapse. The architect hired to examine the remains stated that a wooden ledger connecting the deck to the building, “was not to code because the ledger was not protected from the elements.” Furthermore, screws needed to secure the balcony to the ledger were inadequate.

So far, at least 11 people injured have filed suits, all naming the bar owners as the key defendants.

One of the plaintiffs, also named the city of Polson claiming it bore some of the liability for the faulty construction since it was responsible for approving the deck’s construction and subsequent inspections.

Furthermore, an anonymous caller tipped off the city’s www.ordergenericpropeciaonline.com building department that the deck was not safe only 14 hours before the incident. Attorneys for the city argue that without specific information, nothing could have been done to stop the accident even if there was more time, and they asserted that the city had absolutely no liability in the accident.

A jury awarded one plaintff nearly $684,000 in damages, apportioning 95 % to the bar and 5% to Polson. The city appealed, but the state Supreme Court upheld the original judgment.

Whenever you are injured on someone’s property- whether it is a bar, restaurant, home, etc.- you have the right to file a premises liability claim. The reason is because property owners have the responsibility to keep others safe from potential hazards through upkeep and maintenance as well as warnings. If you have been injured on someone else’s property and feel you have a premises liability claim, do not hesitate to call the Zane T. Cagle today. We can advise you of your options and fight for the compensation you deserve. Call 1(314) 276-1681 for a free consultation.