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Couple sues Wal-Mart over broken grocery bag
Pittsburg Tribune Review ^ | 1/8/2004 | Rich Cholodofsky

Posted on 01/08/2004 8:28:54 AM PST by RolandBurnam

Edited on 04/13/2004 2:03:18 AM PDT by Jim Robinson. [history]

By Rich Cholodofsky TRIBUNE-REVIEW Thursday, January 8, 2004 A Mt. Pleasant Township couple wants Wal-Mart to pay for foot and toe injuries they claim were caused by canned goods and condiments that tumbled from an overfilled plastic grocery bag.

According to a two-count civil lawsuit filed Wednesday in Westmoreland County, Brenda and Ronald Sager contend a plastic bag they brought home from the East Huntingdon Township store last month was deficient and overstuffed.


(Excerpt) Read more at pittsburghlive.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society
KEYWORDS: frivolouslawsuit; tortreform
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These people should be horsewhipped.
1 posted on 01/08/2004 8:28:55 AM PST by RolandBurnam
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2 posted on 01/08/2004 8:31:29 AM PST by Support Free Republic (Your support keeps Free Republic going strong!)
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To: RolandBurnam
Her husband also is seeking that amount in damages, claiming that as a result of his wife's injuries he has been deprived of her attention and comfort and suffered a loss of consortium.

For a banged-up foot? Mebbe he's one'a them fetishists. :)

3 posted on 01/08/2004 8:31:59 AM PST by TheBigB (...international law is whatever the United States and Great Britain say it is. - Ann Coulter)
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To: RolandBurnam; Willie Green; xsmommy; mountaineer
When I visited the 'Burgh over the holidays, it seemed that geriatric medicine and "parasitic industries" related thereto (personal injury lawyers) are the only growth industries remaining there.
4 posted on 01/08/2004 8:32:30 AM PST by martin_fierro (Any musical with a PBY-5 Catalina in it can't be all bad.)
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To: RolandBurnam
It is so pathetic to watch people blame others for their own stupidity. I hope they are not dumb enough to think they are convincing anyone, except maybe a jury, which is normally in the same IQ range, based on current jury shopping trends.
5 posted on 01/08/2004 8:32:39 AM PST by microgood (They will all die......most of them.)
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To: RolandBurnam
Her husband also is seeking that amount in damages, claiming that as a result of his wife's injuries he has been deprived of her attention and comfort and suffered a loss of consortium.

Oh, for the love of Mike. For consortium, use of her foot is not strictly needed.
6 posted on 01/08/2004 8:34:01 AM PST by Xenalyte (I may not agree with your bumper sticker, but I'll defend to the death your right to stick it)
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To: microgood
When I grocery-shop, I bag my own stuff. Plastic bags are always doubled. If a bagger gets there before me, I ask for double bags. Boy, is THAT ever totally difficult. What an amazing hassle. But hey, it beats hell out of a broken foot and loss of consortium.
7 posted on 01/08/2004 8:35:05 AM PST by Xenalyte (I may not agree with your bumper sticker, but I'll defend to the death your right to stick it)
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To: RolandBurnam
Sounds as if the bags held while they were placed in the cart. They held while they were loaded in to the car. They held while they were carried to the house and whatever went on getting them inside. They failed after the plaintiffs had them in their custoday for some time and moved them several times. I hope Wal-Mart makes sure that the plaintiffs and their lawyer have an unprofitable experience as a result of their suit.
8 posted on 01/08/2004 8:35:08 AM PST by FreePaul
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To: RolandBurnam
"Her husband also is seeking that amount in damages, claiming that as a result of his wife's injuries he has been deprived of her attention and comfort and suffered a loss of consortium."

He's blaming Wal-Mart for not getting any nooky????? Dang! My husband usually just blames the alcohol!!
9 posted on 01/08/2004 8:35:19 AM PST by 4everontheRight (GW'04 - Rice"08)
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To: microgood
Hey Brenda and Ronald - GET A JOB!
10 posted on 01/08/2004 8:35:53 AM PST by MissEdie
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To: RolandBurnam
How insensitive you guys!

You obviously have NO idea of the trauma one can go through after being attacked by a (plastic)jar of mustard!

Have some compassion! Make Wal-Mart pay the 37 cents!
11 posted on 01/08/2004 8:36:05 AM PST by JustPlainJoe
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To: Xenalyte
For consortium, use of her foot is not strictly needed.

That's not the case in West Hollwood, from what I understand....of course, there isn't any "she" involvement over there.

12 posted on 01/08/2004 8:36:27 AM PST by ErnBatavia (Some days you're the windshield; some days you're the bug)
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To: Xenalyte
Pracitce safe food nooky. Use condiments. ;)
13 posted on 01/08/2004 8:37:11 AM PST by TheBigB (...international law is whatever the United States and Great Britain say it is. - Ann Coulter)
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To: RolandBurnam
OOOPS. You were just a little fast in your post than I was.

This is a pet peeve of mind. Not just with Wal-Mart. Those plastic bags are worthless and are constantly breaking. I've complained to our supermarket about them and their response was that it cost 1.5 cents per bag verse 8 cents for paper.

However, suing is over-reacting.
14 posted on 01/08/2004 8:37:27 AM PST by HarleyD (READ Your Bible-STUDY to show yourself approved)
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To: Xenalyte
Oh, for the love of Mike. For consortium, use of her foot is not strictly needed.

You must have lived a very sheltered life...

15 posted on 01/08/2004 8:38:06 AM PST by Poohbah ("Beware the fury of a patient man" -- John Dryden)
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To: HarleyD
Try double-bagging. Or even tripling. That'll get their attention - and likely get them to bring you some paper bags, which if you're lucky will have handles thereon.
16 posted on 01/08/2004 8:38:32 AM PST by Xenalyte (I may not agree with your bumper sticker, but I'll defend to the death your right to stick it)
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To: FreePaul
They failed after the plaintiffs had them in their custoday for some time and moved them several times.

Note also the alleged failure more: "That's when the handle tore and the bottom of the bag broke, the Sagers claim."

Somehow I doubt all of that happened at once. I can't think of a time when I've ever had a plastic bag fail catastrophically like this.

17 posted on 01/08/2004 8:39:19 AM PST by r9etb
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To: RolandBurnam
That's when the handle tore and the bottom of the bag broke, the Sagers claim.

It's difficult to understand how both of these events could have taken place. One or the other, but not both.
18 posted on 01/08/2004 8:40:08 AM PST by tang-soo
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To: Poohbah
You must have lived a very sheltered life...

Please don't tell us about body parts you've had to treat for athlete's foot....

19 posted on 01/08/2004 8:40:33 AM PST by r9etb
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To: RolandBurnam
My husband's grandma once had a 25 pound frozen turkey fall on her foot. Perhaps she should have sued Butterball? What money-hungry idiots some people are.
20 posted on 01/08/2004 8:41:52 AM PST by HungarianGypsy
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To: Xenalyte
> For consortium, use of her foot is not strictly needed.

Oh, I don't know...where's your imagination. ;-p
21 posted on 01/08/2004 8:41:55 AM PST by MrConfettiMan (Whatever happened to Preparations A through G?)
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To: JustPlainJoe
I was at WalMart last night. I opened my door and there was an empty box from an early pregnancy test. Someone apparently couldn't wait...

Æ
22 posted on 01/08/2004 8:42:21 AM PST by AgentEcho (If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went. - Will Rogers)
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To: Explorer89; pittsburgh gop guy
You Pittsburgh, people. First it was the snowstorms, now this nonsense. Sheesh.
23 posted on 01/08/2004 8:42:56 AM PST by MrConfettiMan (Whatever happened to Preparations A through G?)
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To: RolandBurnam
"Bags tend to be underpacked," said NGA staffer Karen Vorhees.

Boy, howdy! They get packed for what a typical 80-year-old granny could carry in one sack. I'm sure that's because if they packed more in one bag, 80-year-old grannies would complain that the bags were too heavy.

Sounds like the person at Wal-Mart did a good job of packing and if anybody deserves to be sued, it's not Wal-Mart but the manufacturers of the plastic bag.

But, of course, we all know that Wal-Mart has deep pockets and a pattern of not contesting lawsuits. You reap what you sow.

24 posted on 01/08/2004 8:43:03 AM PST by Tall_Texan (Happy 2004 - the year we put Republicanism into overdrive.)
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To: Xenalyte
My wife collects paper bags from a particular store because she likes them better than those at the store where she regularly shops. The bags are doubled before she goes to the store. She goes to one particular checker and has her favorite sacker fill and carry out the bags (when he isn't out of the country). The management isn't happy about filling bags with another store's name printed on them but they go along. I like it because my job is to carry the bags in when she gets home.
25 posted on 01/08/2004 8:44:43 AM PST by FreePaul
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To: Xenalyte
> Try double-bagging. Or even tripling.

The result of this lawsuit will cause all stores to start doing just that sending the environazis crazy. This could be fun if it weren't so asinine. :)
26 posted on 01/08/2004 8:45:28 AM PST by MrConfettiMan (Whatever happened to Preparations A through G?)
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To: Xenalyte
When the baggers grocery stores used to ask, "Paper or plastic," my dad would often try to be funny and say, "Put it in a box." After saying that once he was busy talking to the clerk and didn't notice the bagger left. He had taken my dad seriously and had gotten a box for the groceries.
27 posted on 01/08/2004 8:47:18 AM PST by HungarianGypsy
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To: TheBigB
Pracitce safe food nooky. Use condiments. ;)

Mayonnaise. Mustard. I believe if they hadn't used condiments, they wouldn't be in this mess. ;-P

28 posted on 01/08/2004 8:47:29 AM PST by Tall_Texan (Happy 2004 - the year we put Republicanism into overdrive.)
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To: RolandBurnam
Agreed about the horsewhipping.

Also, lets horsewhip the baggers who tie the plastic bag handles in a knot.

If I cut myself using a knife to get the bag open because its tied in a knot..........
29 posted on 01/08/2004 8:48:49 AM PST by Rebelbase (Lost tagline.)
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To: RolandBurnam
broke open when the Sagers returned home and started to put away their groceries. That's when the handle tore and the bottom of the bag broke, the Sagers claim.

A) Didn't happen on Wal-Mart property

B) What's to say they didn't put all of that stuff into one bag once it was in the trunk, or on their way home.

End of story.

30 posted on 01/08/2004 8:49:24 AM PST by ItsOurTimeNow ("By all that we hold dear on this Earth I bid you stand, men of the West!")
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To: microgood
I hope they are not dumb enough to think they are convincing anyone, except maybe a jury, which is normally in the same IQ range, based on current jury shopping trends.

Unfortunately, the jury's IQ range, is why many of these dirt bags win their law suits. I hate to say it, but I am sure they will make some money.

31 posted on 01/08/2004 8:51:27 AM PST by Mark17
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To: r9etb; RolandBurnam
If this gets suit very far along I can see at least two Failure Analysis experts making a lot of money. I haven't been to Pittsburgh in a long time but I'm sure that I could qualify as an expert on plastic bags in a relatively short time.
32 posted on 01/08/2004 8:51:45 AM PST by FreePaul
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To: HarleyD
Get your own bag!
33 posted on 01/08/2004 8:54:14 AM PST by Cronos (W2004!)
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To: RolandBurnam
Unnnnnbelievable.
34 posted on 01/08/2004 8:55:35 AM PST by fml ( You can twist perception, reality won't budge. -RUSH)
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To: RolandBurnam
Dang, I've consortiumed with my wife when I had a sprained ankle and another time when she had a strained knee.
35 posted on 01/08/2004 8:58:21 AM PST by kegler4
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To: RolandBurnam
These people should be horsewhipped.

Well, they were already Miracle Whipped!!

36 posted on 01/08/2004 8:58:53 AM PST by gracex7 (The LORD is not slack concerning His promise....but is longsuffering to us-ward. 2 Peter 3:9)
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To: RolandBurnam
"Those bags are good for 10 or 15 pounds," Kubica said.

They do have a point - those are fluid ounces listed, and all items are heavier than water. A quick calculation using water says there were at LEAST 8 pounds in that sack. With the heavy items probably boosting it somewhere in the 12 to 15 pound range. Easy enough to check...

Still this is a muy stupido lawsuit, as many are, and should be thrown out. I say throw the case out. Offer to pay the medical bills, fire the sacker, and tell them to take a flying leap.
37 posted on 01/08/2004 9:00:59 AM PST by HeadOn (It's me, it's me, it's Ernest T. !)
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To: Mo1
Let's try this again. The duplicated thread was pulled.

We live in a sue happy society.

I heard this on the radio this morning.

Man blames cable firm for TV addiction

38 posted on 01/08/2004 9:02:18 AM PST by MotleyGirl70
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To: RolandBurnam
If they can prove that the bag was defective, and that was why the injury occurred, then they should be compensated for actual damages and nothing more.

There is no way I believe that actual damages were 30,000 bucks.

I'm thinking the doctor or insurance company they used can tell you the actual cost....probably in the neighborhood of 300 bucks. If a day of work was lost, then add another 250 bucks.

This is a 500 dollar case.

The judge should then insist on court costs from these numbnutz and their frivolous lawyer.
39 posted on 01/08/2004 9:03:03 AM PST by xzins (Retired Army and Proud of It!)
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To: HeadOn
DISCLAIMER - Come to think of it, some of those heavier items MAY be ounces, as in weight, and not fluid ounces...

Still - the little old ladies in the grocery store used to make me unpack heavy bags and re-pack in two or three bags if I put too much in. Oh, to be a teenager again.......
40 posted on 01/08/2004 9:03:50 AM PST by HeadOn (It's me, it's me, it's Ernest T. !)
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To: xzins
I'm a firm believer in "Loser Pays" lawsuits... But the lawyers, aka Congress, would never allow it to get there.
41 posted on 01/08/2004 9:06:04 AM PST by HeadOn (It's me, it's me, it's Ernest T. !)
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To: RolandBurnam
These people should be horsewhipped.

A whole bunch'a this country's problems would be solved if horse whippin' came back in vogue!

42 posted on 01/08/2004 9:07:58 AM PST by night reader
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To: HeadOn
I'm a firm believer in "Loser Pays" lawsuits... But the lawyers, aka Congress, would never allow it to get there.

Loser pays and other derivitives have nothing to do with Congress. These are State suits pursuant to State laws.

In Michigan, we have a process wherby your case is evaulated by three lawyers fairly early in the litigation process. They assign a dollar value to the case. If both sides accept the amount ... the case is over. If a perty rejects, however, that party must improve his or her position by 10% at trial or pay the other sides actual attorney fees and costs.

While not exactly "loser pays" it is more like the "unreasonable one pays" In this case, the consortium number would likely be zero. Toss in actual medicals (probably less than ($500.00) and Pain and suffering (another $500.00 bucks and the evaluation recommendation would be about $1,000.00.

43 posted on 01/08/2004 9:21:04 AM PST by CharacterCounts
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To: HeadOn
"The bag, which contained a 32-ounce jar of Miracle Whip, a 46-ounce bottle of ketchup, three 15-ounce cans of fruit, an 18-ounce bottle of ranch dressing and a 12-ounce bottle of mustard, broke open when the Sagers returned home and started to put away their groceries."

I was curious, so I duplicated the above as close as I could.

I filled a used blue plastic Wal-Mart bag I found laying around with a 32-ounce jar of Hellmann's mayonnaise, a 64-ounce bottle of Heinz ketchup (some gone), one 29-ounce can of peaches and one 15-ounce can of peach halves, a 16-ounce bottle of Newman's Own Caesar dressing and a 19-ounce plastic bottle of Plochman's mustard.

11 pounds. I carried it all over the house, and it never felt like it was about to break.

If they do this with a jury, there is no way they'll go against Wal-Mart.

44 posted on 01/08/2004 9:31:42 AM PST by robertpaulsen
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To: HeadOn
Also, one other thing I noted. When I was carrying this 11-pound bag by the handles, it's only about 8 - 10 inches above the ground. Probably would be less if a shorter person is carrying it.

Now, if the bag broke when she lifted it to the counter at home, well, that's one thing. But since the damage was limited to her right foot (and we can assume she was right-handed), I think it broke when she was carrying it. (Otherwise, they would have fallen everywhere.)

Ligament damage and broken bones from an 8 inch drop? Fishy.

45 posted on 01/08/2004 9:47:47 AM PST by robertpaulsen
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To: RolandBurnam
Wal-Mart always underpacks their bags, leaving me with far to many bags to try to grab onto.
46 posted on 01/08/2004 9:49:11 AM PST by antiRepublicrat
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To: 4everontheRight
He's blaming Wal-Mart for not getting any nooky????? Dang! My husband usually just blames the alcohol!!

Loss of consortium is in itself a legitimate legal claim and often added to injury suits (which in themselves are often baseless).

47 posted on 01/08/2004 9:49:54 AM PST by antiRepublicrat
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To: TheBigB
Pracitce safe food nooky. Use condiments. ;)

I can't, I'm Catholic. We aren't allowed to use condiments.

:-)))))

48 posted on 01/08/2004 9:50:57 AM PST by TomB
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To: martin_fierro
I have a beef with Target. They seem reluctant to part with any of their super-large bags. You buy something big and they always say, here's a sticker for that, you don't need a bad, do you? And I always answer, Why yes, I do want a bag, thank you.
49 posted on 01/08/2004 9:53:10 AM PST by Ciexyz
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To: RolandBurnam
Bagging groceries is a lost art!

..there was no such thing as plastic bags when I was a sacker in high-school.

50 posted on 01/08/2004 9:54:33 AM PST by TexasCajun
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