If you’ve ever been totally soaked by gas while filling up your vehicle because the hose separated from the nozzle, you may have cause to file a personal injury claim.
Getting gasoline all over yourself including in your eyes and all over your face, not to mention your clothes, is an upsetting experience. It may also be one that causes serious harm unless you get help immediately. Depending on the circumstances of the gas splash, you may have grounds to file a personal injury claim against the gas station for having a defective gas nozzle. If you do find yourself in a position like this, make sure you speak to a skilled personal injury lawyer for advice.
Let’s say there was no emergency eyewash station or other solution on hand at the gas station and the painful experience of having gas in your eyes was only alleviated by using the washroom and washing it out with water. Let’s also say that the hose was very clearly defective and that the management of the gas station knew or should have known the hose was in such a bad state – bad enough that they would have reasonably expected your type of accident could and would happen.
Let’s further posit that there was no damage to your vehicle because you immediately washed it after the incident and it was fine. Now, depending on which state you happen to be in, negligence law may be different. This is one of the major reasons to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney for assistance. Knowing your rights is the first thing you need to do for yourself.
This type of an accident is not common, and assuming the hose was indeed “clearly” defective and that may be proven, then you will, as mentioned above, need to prove the station owner did know about the problem, or should have known about it. Nozzles don’t have a habit of separating from the hoses, so it’s likely the owner should have known about the problem, have seen it or had it mentioned to him or her by other patrons filling their vehicles.
The other argument in your favor would be the fact that the standard of care or maintenance at a service station would seem to dictate that the hoses be checked for faults on a regular basis. Given those factors, you may be entitled to some form of compensation depending on the severity of your injuries.
If they are not that serious, you may not get a lot of money in return. Many personal injury cases are expediently evaluated on the basis of the degree of liability the station owner has, the exact nature of the injury, the type and amount of medical bills you may have incurred now, and perhaps in the future and any pain and suffering you struggle with now and in the future. In addition, you may be able to claim lost wages now and in the future.
Based on the fact that there were no serious injuries but there was severe pain from gas in your eyes, you may have a claim for the pain, stress and inconvenience as a result of the nozzle separating from the hose and dousing you with gas. Contact an attorney as soon as you can and make sure that the attorney not only handles personal injury claims, but premises liability. You never know, this kind of thing might have happened at the same gas station before and this would be good for your case. If the facts of your case merit a lawsuit, your attorney will begin to preserve evidence, examine maintenance records, get photographs and determine what kind of liability insurance the station has. Don’t delay contacting an attorney, as time is of the essence.
Tim Anderson works with Atlanta Personal Injury attorney, Stephen M. Ozcomert. The firm specializes in personal injury, malpractice, motorcycle accidents, and wrongful death. To learn more about Atlanta personal injury lawyer, Stephen M. Ozcomert or Atlanta personal injury, Atlanta personal injury lawyer, Atlanta personal injury attorney, visit Ozcomert.com.