Saturday, July 11, 2009

Teenage Texter Plus Open Manhole Equals Lawsuit

"Texting Teen Falls Down Open NYC Manhole"
FOXNews (July 11, 2009)

"A New York City teenager says she was text messaging while walking down the street — and the next second she was down a manhole.

"Alexa Longueira was walking down a Staten Island block and was getting ready to text message when she fell into an open sewer manhole, MyFOX NY reports.

"Longueira suffered mild cuts and bruises and is expected to recover.

"The teen's mother says workers told her they left the manhole open and unattended for just seconds while they went to fetch some cones from their truck...."

This shouldn't be a surprise:

"...The Longueira family says they plan on filing a lawsuit."

It's an interesting news piece from a few points of view:
  • As a case of
    • Teenage obliviousness
    • America's lawsuit-happy culture
    • The need to put cones up first
      • You never know when a teen will wander over the hole
  • The slapstick aspect of falling into a manhole
  • As an opportunity to pass a new set of laws to protect texting teens from manholes

My guess is that the Longueria family will get some money out of this: maybe even enough to cover what the lawyers will charge. Fact is, those traffic cones should have been up.

Still: Walking into an open manhole?!

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