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Just how poor of condition are San Diego's parks in? Poor enough for the City of San Diego to be named in two unrelated lawsuits in the span of one month, both over improper maintenance and shoddy sod conditions.

The most recent legal complaint was filed on September 4 by attorneys representing San Diego Unified School District.

The district was filed on behalf of LaToya Smedley, a noon duty assistant at Porter Elementary School in Lincoln Park. Smedley injured herself while walking on a wet and ruddy field.

The park, according to the complaint was "negligently, carelessly, and recklessly owned, entrusted, maintained, repaired, used and controlled said grass field and property that they caused and allowed it to be in a dangerous and defective condition, thereby causing employee to be injured when her feet suddenly and unexpectedly sunk into wet and muddy grass, causing her feet to stick in the mud and her body to twist on defendants' premises."

The City "should have known of the dangerous and defective condition of their property and should have foreseen the danger to members of the public including the employee."

A similar lawsuit over poorly maintained park space was filed on August 27. In that complaint, a man injured his leg after stepping into a gopher hole at Robb Field in Ocean Beach. Gopher infestation at the field, according to the lawsuit and media accounts, has been a hot topic for residents and park goers.

In the most recent case, attorneys for San Diego Unified are asking the City to cover all workers compensation claims as well as any additional damages.

http://www.sandiegoreader.com/weblogs/news-ticker/2013/aug/29/man-sues-the-city-over-gopher-infestation-at-robb-/

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Comments

BlueSouthPark Sept. 8, 2013 @ 7:52 p.m.

I think there's not much of a case here. It's pretty reasonable to expect to sink into a wet, muddy field. It the school district or city or whoever is legally in charge of maintenance was watering the field, that's hardly negligence; watering is maintenance. Maybe have the sense to walk around it next time?

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monaghan Sept. 8, 2013 @ 10:28 p.m.

Let's hope it's not an excuse for the School Board to spend money on another one of those artificial turf fields that have been put in at places like La Jolla High and Muirlands Middle Schools. Petroleum-based fake-grass products promised and delivered a level running surface, but over time and with heavy use, they are not all they were cracked up to be.

Pseudo turf is hot as Hades during early September soccer games -- kids complain their feet feel like they're burning up and one coach's Adidas' soles MELTED yesterday. When kids fall or roll on the fake stuff, they get covered with visible chemical residue. Fine for once-a-week major league football, less fine for heavy use by school-age children.

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Diogenes Sept. 9, 2013 @ 9:43 a.m.

The City will have to pay for injuries if the condition of public property is left in an unsafe condition.

Why are they talking about expanding the Convention Center or a new stadium until they maintain what the City is legally respondible for already?

It is very sad to see elders injured by large cracks in the sidewalks and potholes in the road. A typical injury would be a fractured wrist with open reduction.

Many attorneys do not take these cases because they have to prove thay the City and/or its employees knew or should have knoen of the dangerous condition of the public property in a sufficient time before the accident to have been able to have prevented it That means discovery into the City's records after filing a Notice of Claim Agsinst a Goverment Entity snd filing a lawsuit. A safety expert is required.

These are expensive cases for plaintiffs lawfirms.

Medicare must be notified. Usually, there is no wage loss. Pain and suffering alone makes a government entity dubious as an investment of time and money, knowing that the majority are lost in trial.

Most attorneys will not take such a case. It can be argued that the defect is trivial or open and obvious.

In the minds' of jurors is the idea of raising taxes. Well, they end up paying more federal and state taxes, if not municipal taxes for all the injuries that could have been prevented.

1

CaptainObvious Sept. 9, 2013 @ 9:50 a.m.

They had better close the parks and sidewalks until they can be re-opened under new management. Purge your local government.

1

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