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Thread: Accident caused by forklift forks left up - GIF

  1. #11
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    While I agree the operator has an obligation to conduct his machine safely to all in the area, the collective response in so v-e-r-y American, which is to say I am to be protected from my own stupidity. Not many other places so support the stupid litigant, maties.

  2. #12
    Supporting Member Frank S's Avatar
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    It is safe to say that both are at fault here the forklift operator for not having his forks on the ground while the lift was parked where as the girl would have ran over them on her little motor scooter which at the speed she was traveling would have launched like the General Lee jumping a bridge with its short wheel base by the time the front wheel had left the ground the rear wheel would have struct the fork with all of the weight firmly planted on the rear wheel it would have bucked with the force of the hind legs of a 3 year old bronc driving the front end back to the ground just beyond the 2nd fork she would have been fighting the handle bars and by this time the rear wheel would have hit the second fork bucking once again only now the front wheel would have been skidding sideways since she would have lost any control that she may have once thought she had the scooter and the girl would wind up in a twisted pile of metal plastic and female flesh but probably not sustaining near as severe an injury as striking face chin or neck first on a solid steel bar.
    had the forklift operator seen the girl approaching in time all he would have had to do would to have raised the forks a few more inches and she would have sailed right under never knowing she was in danger.
    The girl obviously had no awareness of where she was riding and probably didn't even notice there was a forklift sitting near her path of travel or she would have ridden around to the rear of it. Or maybe she did see it and did not correlate that such a machine has long protrusions sticking out in front of it which may or may not be on the ground or if raised not be high enough to ride under.
    People drive into and under things like the backs of Semi trailers every day and never even know they are about to do so.
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  3. #13
    Supporting Member Crusty's Avatar
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    I see the most fault in the act of stopping a forklift across a pathway with the forks at eye level and then sitting there, oblivious, using a cell phone.

    But you're right I do view this through the lens of my local environment and prevalent attitudes, and here we understand that people make mistakes and so we expect each other to take reasonable precautions so that hazards are minimized.
    If you can't make it precise make it adjustable.

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    Supporting Member mklotz's Avatar
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    A number of the responses here sound as if they were written by California lawyers. Careless, unobservant, fone-fondling idiots must be protected from themselves so they can live on and further pollute the gene pool.

    This is why we live in a society where automobile window sunshades have to, by law, bear a sticker advising the user to remove before driving.
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    Supporting Member Crusty's Avatar
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    I'm not a lawyer and have never stayed at a Holiday Inn Express so I'm no legal authority but I have served on several juries and I've found the round table discussions with the jury after a trial chaired by the judge to be particularly enlightening about the law and the legal system.

    In our legal system the scooter rider may not have had a reasonable expectation of obstacles in her path (Was she warned?) and it's also possible that the tines merged with the background from her viewpoint, so she gets the benefit of the doubt and is not the most responsible for the accident.

    The operator was clearly negligent but the fact that he had a switched on phone with him while operating the forklift strongly suggests that he wasn't trained in its' safe operation, so he too gets the benefit of the doubt and in the worst case is only partially culpable.

    The accident could have been prevented entirely by the forklift owner or lessee providing proper training which included safety measures and operating procedures (no cell phones, erect barricades, keep forks low, pay attention, etc.) which would have satisfied the prudent and reasonable precautions requirement. This viewpoint will be the legally dominant one and the forklift owner or lessee will be the one taking it in the shorts from this accident under the US legal system.

    Lawyers spend a lot of time thinking about ways to mold the evidence at hand into a scenario in which they prevail (and get paid) so justice is only an occasional by-product of the legal system. To clarify, I personally think that stupidity should hurt and that fone heads are an infestation.
    If you can't make it precise make it adjustable.

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    Supporting Member mklotz's Avatar
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    Anyone driving a motor scooter, especially inside a building, should have a natural "reasonable expectation of obstacles" in his path. Lacking same makes him unfit for operating the vehicle.

    I think it's marvelous that all this legal nit-picking over fault always seems to decide that the party with the deepest pockets is most at fault.
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    Supporting Member jdurand's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mklotz View Post
    Anyone driving a motor scooter, especially inside a building, should have a natural "reasonable expectation of obstacles" in his path. Lacking same makes him unfit for operating the vehicle.

    I think it's marvelous that all this legal nit-picking over fault always seems to decide that the party with the deepest pockets is most at fault.
    There was a night club fire years ago where the club had been insulated with standard foam rubber, not fire retardant foam. The band used outdoor pyro indoors. Lots died.

    Building inspector who passed that foam: No charges.

    Owner and band: Liable for what they could get from them.

    The company that supplied beer to the club: paid the most.

    I talked to one of the people on the fire commission, he said the beer company was found liable because there wasn't enough money in the band and the club owner to pay the victims families. Well, at least he was honest about ripping off the beer company.

    Oh, as to the building inspector being found liable? HAHAHAHAHAHahahahahaha

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    Supporting Member Crusty's Avatar
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    True story from 40 years ago.

    A guy was traveling cross country in a Winnebago when a problem developed with his brakes. He pulled into a garage along the way and the mechanic said his front brakes were shot and could be fixed in several days when parts arrived. The driver instructed the mechanic to disconnect the front brakes and rig it so that he could continue on using his rear brakes only. Farther down the road the guy came to a railroad crossing with a moving train in it, couldn't stop in time and rammed into the side of the train, which latched onto his Winnie and dragged it down the tracks where a hundred yards farther there was a phone booth near the tracks with a guy in it using the phone. The dragged Winnie destroyed the phone booth and the guy inside was seriously injured.

    Who got sued?

    Why AT&T naturally, and they settled out of court for an undisclosed sum.
    If you can't make it precise make it adjustable.

  9. #19
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    Who got sued?

    Why AT&T naturally, and they settled out of court for an undisclosed sum.


    Somehow the legal logic escapes me on that one.

  10. #20
    Supporting Member mklotz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ibdennyak View Post
    Who got sued?

    Why AT&T naturally, and they settled out of court for an undisclosed sum.


    Somehow the legal logic escapes me on that one.
    "Legal logic" is a contradiction in terms.
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