According to a recent news article from Business Insider, a school band was participating in a completion with other bands at a high school in the greater Charlotte area. Authorities say the students were under a large canopy or awning at one of the buildings being used to host the completion when there as a loud popping sound.
One student in the band said as soon as heard what sounded like snapping metal, he ran toward the lawn outside the awning. As he ran to the lawn, he heard the canopy collapsing and saw people getting trapped under it. While the total number of injuries has not been released, it has been confirmed that at least one student was taken to a hospital in Winston-Salem with what has been described with life-threatening personal injuries. There has been no official update on this victim’s condition. In total, authorities reported 25 people were injured as result of this accident.
Authorities say the large canopy was held up by four large posts with one post at each corner of the canopy. While the students were standing under the canopy, a commercial truck hit one of the support posts, causing the tent to collapse quickly. The band competition was immediately canceled as first responders were arriving at the location of this canopy collapse. First responders stayed around until long after the students were checked for personal injury and sent for treatment if needed. During the period of time following the accident, emergency personnel stayed on the scene to help take apart the collapsed awning as band members looked on. Some fellow band members could be seen in the building above the awning examining the wreckage. It should be noted that there have been no claims of liability for any personal injury in connection with this case as of the time this article was published.
Charlotte personal injury attorneys know that accidents involving multiple victims and multiple potential causes can involve more complex litigation than in other more typical personal injury cases. There may also be an issue when one of the possible defendants is a government agency, such as a board of education. In these cases, the government agency may be able to claim a type of immunity from personal injury lawsuits under what is known as the doctrine of sovereign immunity.
This type of immunity generally means that defendant cannot be sued, even when there is no question as to liability. In some cases, the doctrine of sovereign immunity does not preclude a plaintiff from bringing a claim of liability for personal injury, but rather serves as a cap on the total amount of damages that can be awarded as part of a personal injury case.
The reason sovereign immunity exists is because legal scholars and politicians believed that if a government was constantly in fear of being sued for negligence, it would not be able to function properly. However, just because a municipal defendant may claim sovereign immunity, it does not mean that the doctrine will apply. There is often a lot an experienced personal injury attorney can do to get around this potential problem and fight for your rights to a full and appropriate financial compensation.
Contact our Carolina personal injury lawyers at Lee Law Offices today by calling 800-887-1965.
More Blog Entries:
Castro v. City of Thousand Oaks – Dangerous Pedestrian Crossing Sites, Sept. 11, 2015, Charlotte Injury Attorney Blog