Braves Sued After Death by Stadium Fall

     ATLANTA (CN) — The upper-deck railing at Turner Field should have been built higher than 33 inches, the family of a man who fell to his death at an Atlanta Braves game last year claims in court.
     In a wrongful-death suit filed Tuesday in Fulton County, Georgia, the family of Greg Murrey says the Braves and Major League Baseball could easily have been prevented if Turner Field had guardrails at least 42-inches high.
     Murrey, 60, was sitting in section 401 at the stadium on Aug. 29, 2015, when he stood up to boo New York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez as he was walked up to the plate.
     The longtime season-ticket holder then fell over the railing and plunged 50 feet, landing on concrete. He was later pronounced dead at Grady Memorial Hospital.
     “The Braves and MLB knew that spectators at baseball games get up during the course of a game — both spontaneously to react to events at the stadium and in response to prompting by an announcer,” the complaint says.
     The Braves are building a new stadium that will open in 2017. According to the complaint, the Braves and MLB are relying on a 1920s-era building code that allows guardrails to be 26 inches if the fans are seated.
     Murrey’s family argues a 26-inch minimum isn’t enough to protect fans in any ballpark.
     Two other fans have fallen to their death at Turner Field in the last decade, and fatal falls have occurred in other stadiums.
     Most notably, Shannon Stone, the father of a 6 year old, fell to his death at a Texas Rangers game when he leaned over the guardrail to catch a ball from Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton in 2011. The Rangers raised their guardrail to 42 inches in wake of the tragedy.
     “Had the rest of MLB uniformly increased railing heights after Mr. Stone’s death, Greg would not have died,” the complaint says. “Another inexpensive safety precaution, protective netting, would also have easily prevented Greg’s death. Instead, the Braves continue to incorporate dangerously low railings, placing its fans at grave risk of death or catastrophic injury.”
     Murrey’s family is represented by Atlanta-based attorney Michael Neff.
     Representatives of the Braves and Major League Baseball could not immediately be reached for comment.

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