Store Not Liable for|Parking Lot Injury | Courthouse News Service
Saturday, December 2, 2023
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Store Not Liable for|Parking Lot Injury

(CN) - The Piggly Wiggly is not liable for the injuries of a 13-year-old girl whose great-grandmother drove over a wheel stop in the store's parking lot and pinned her against the building, the South Carolina Court of Appeals ruled.

Lola Nelson visited the Piggly Wiggly in Bishopville, S.C., with her 13-year-old great-granddaughter, Patrice.

When Patrice got out of the car and crossed in front of it, Lola stepped on the gas and drove over a wheel stop, pinning Patrice against the building. The child suffered a broken leg.

Patrice's parents, Delores and Bernard Nelson, sued Lola and the Piggly Wiggly for "negligent, careless, reckless and willful acts." Specifically, the Nelsons argued that the wheel stops were unreasonably dangerous.

The appeals court upheld the trial court's dismissal of the case, stating that the parents failed to prove their claims.

"(Patrice's) injury resulted not from the condition or placement of the wheel stops but from the operation of Grandmother's vehicle," Judge Jasper Cureton wrote. "Although not entirely unprecedented, the vehicle's acceleration and contact with (Patrice) were unexpected and unusual."

Cureton added that "the improper operation of Grandmother's vehicle was not a foreseeable hazard against which respondents were required to protect (Patrice)."

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