PLG Settles Case for Woman Who Suffered Burn Injury at Local Resort
Piccuta Law Group has finalized a settlement for a woman who suffered a burn injury while visiting a Carmel Valley resort. The client was staying at the Bernardus Lodge and Spa when a glass she was using exploded. As a result, she was scalded by hot water and received second degree burns on her wrist. She hired our firm to help her receive compensation for her pain, suffering and medical expenses. We were able to resolve her case for over 100 times her medical expenses.
How did the Burn Injury Occur?
The client was a guest staying at Bernardus Lodge & Spa. In the morning hours of June 18, 2022, she decided to use the complimentary tea station that was inside of her room on the property. The tea station included an electric hot water kettle, glass mugs, and an assortment of teas and coffees. The client heated hot water with the kettle and poured it into one of the glass mugs that were laid out on the station.
After allowing her tea to steep, the client picked up the glass mug. For reasons unknown, the glass mug shattered while she was holding it. This resulted in scalding hot water burning her arm.
Why Our Monterey Burn Injury Attorneys Believed the Hotel Was Responsible
Our personal injury attorneys concluded that the hotel was responsible for the burn injury under the law. At all relevant times, the client was a legal invitee at the hotel. This meant she was legally on the premises and had a right to be there.
She had paid a significant amount to stay at the hotel and had spent additional sums for activities there including dining at the hotel’s restaurant. As a result, the hotel owed her a duty to exercise reasonable care in the inspection, maintenance and repair of its premises and its items provided for guests to use.
However, we alleged the hotel breached its duty to exercise reasonable care when it failed to reasonably and timely inspect the glassware it provided to our client. The hotel further failed to maintain the equipment at the tea station in our client’s room. As a result, the hotel exposed her to a dangerous condition at the property that caused her injury.
Specifically, it appeared that the glass mug our client used was either compromised with a crack or other defect. Alternatively, the glassware provided was not suitable for high liquid temperatures. Either way, the glassware failed and shattered when it was filled with hot liquid. Regardless of why the glass failed, the hotel was responsible for our client’s injuries having provided her with a dangerous item that caused her injury.
Since a hotel invites its customers to use its amenities, it has a heightened duty to eliminate dangerous conditions that could potentially cause harm. Inspecting, maintaining, and/or repairing the dangerous condition would have posed a minimal burden to the hotel. The hotel failed to make sure that its property and items provided to its guests were reasonably safe. As a result, it was responsible for the resulting injuries.
What Happened After the Client Suffered the Burn Injury?
The scalding hot water made direct contact with our client’s left arm and hand and immediately caused a serious burn. The client felt excruciating pain from the burn and quickly applied cold water to the area in an attempt to reduce the damage to her skin. The client also applied a burn pad and wrapped the area with a damp towel. However, the burn was too severe to self-treat and the client was rushed to the emergency department at the Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula.
Shortly after the incident, members of the hotel staff formally apologized to our client. Upon our client’s return to the hotel, she found a note and a bottle of wine in her room. The note and wine were left by hotel staff. The client also found that the glassware had been replaced with ceramic mugs. Unfortunately, this gesture was insufficient to fully compensate her for her medical expenses, pain, suffering and permanent disfigurement.
The Extent of the Client’s Burn Injury and Treatment
At the emergency room, the client was assessed by physicians who performed a physical examination and obtained her medical history. Unsurprisingly, the client was diagnosed with a second-degree burn. The client’s wound was cleaned and attended to. She was also given prescription strength ibuprofen to control pain and a tetanus shot.
The burn was so concerning that the treating physician sent photographs to the burn unit at Valley Medical Center for further evaluation. Ultimately, the client was advised that she would need to care for her burn at home and hope for the best. She was discharged from the emergency room with burn dressings and antibiotic ointment. She was also instructed to follow up for additional medical treatment for wound care or if the burn showed signs of infection.
Fortunately, the client did not have any infection following the burn injury. She cared for the wound and it eventually healed. She did not require further medical treatment.
The Permanent Scarring Left by the Burn Injury
Although the burn injury did not require an extensive course of medical treatment, it still resulted in permanent consequences. The burn left a scar on the Client’s wrist. The scar altered the pigment of her skin leaving it with an unnatural pink color. Sadly, the scar was on a highly visible area of her body—just above her left wrist.
Our personal injury attorneys explained to the hotel and its insurance company just how devastating the scar was to the client. We explained that our client was self-conscious about it and thought about it in social settings. The scar became a source of anxiety and angst for our client that she was learning to cope and deal with.
The Burn Injury Settlement Reached by Our Injury Attorneys
The work of our injury attorneys allowed our client to obtain a substantial settlement. The settlement far exceeded our client’s expectations. The exact amount of the settlement is undisclosed, but was more than 100 times the client’s medical expenses. Although the money received did not fix the scarring, it provided our client with serious compensation for what she experienced and the permanent effect the injury had on her.
Contact One of Our Monterey Personal Injury Attorneys Today
If you or a loved one has suffered a burn injury or any other injury due to the fault of another, contact our law office today. Our personal injury attorneys have repeatedly obtained large settlements and record-setting verdicts on behalf of our injured clients. An attorney is available now for a free consultation. We charge nothing unless we take your case and obtain a recovery for you.
About the author: The content on this page was written by California personal injury attorney and civil rights lawyer Charles “Tony” Piccuta. Piccuta graduated with honors from Indiana University-Maurer School of Law in Bloomington, Indiana (Previously ranked Top 35 US News & World Report). Piccuta took and passed the State bars of Arizona, California, Illinois and Nevada (all on the first try). He actively practices throughout California and Arizona. He is a winning trial attorney that regularly handles serious personal injury cases and civil rights lawsuits. He has obtained six and seven figure verdicts in both state and federal court. He has been recognized by Super Lawyers for six years straight. He is AV Rated by Martindale Hubble. He is a member of the Consumer Attorneys of California, American Association for Justice, National Police Accountability Project, Arizona Association of Justice, and many local county and City bar associations.
Disclaimer: The information on this web site is attorney advertising and is for informational purposes only. It does not constitute legal advice. Reading and relying upon the content on this page does not create an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, you should contact our law firm for a free consultation and to discuss your specific case and issues.