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Lawsuits Filed After Two Workers Injured In Boiler Explosion


In July of 2019, a boiler explosion at the University of Nevada, Reno left two workers injured. They have since filed a lawsuit against UNR and the company that was there repairing equipment at the time. The two workers were working in a University dining room when the explosion occurred. The complaint accuses the University of negligence. At the time of the explosion, the University said 8 people suffered minor injuries including 6 students. The lawsuit does not mention the extent of the plaintiff’s injuries.

Injuries and negligence 

Negligence cannot occur without an injury. In fact, the entire concept of negligence is tied to the existence of an injury. While the term ‘negligence’ in common parlance can refer to any act that is careless, the legal definition requires that injuries occur as a result of someone’s carelessness. No injuries, no negligence.

In this case, we have a couple of pieces of information that appear to be more interesting than the rest. Firstly, the University issued a statement saying that 8 people suffered minor injuries. Then, in the complaint, there is a failure to mention injuries.

If a boiler explodes and no one is there to be injured, does that constitute negligence? Under the law, it does not.

Minor injuries and negligence 

Minor injuries are compensable under the law, but often, personal injury attorneys won’t bother with the cases because the potential pay off is so low that the effort expended in the process of litigating it isn’t worth it. So minor injuries are almost never the subject of personal injury lawsuits.

However, some incidents are so traumatic that they leave an emotional scar long after the physical scars have healed. In this case, you have two injured workers who ostensibly suffered minor injuries that may have PTSD from the experience. That can be compensated under the legal theory of negligent infliction of emotional distress.

What is negligent infliction of emotional distress? 

Emotional distress lawsuits can’t be filed on their own most of the time, but they can act as riders to claims in which an actual physical injury occurs. While actual physical injuries don’t have to be severe, they do have to cause the plaintiff to lose income, incur medical expenses, or suffer a temporary reduction to their quality of life. In this manner, damages for emotional distress can be attached to an actual injury claim, but the plaintiff needs to show actual proof that they suffered as a result of their injury. This includes reports from social workers, therapists, psychiatrists, and medical doctors discussing symptoms that occurred after the injury accident.

Contact a Miami Personal Injury Attorney Today 

If you’ve been injured due to the negligence of another party, you are entitled to file a lawsuit to recover damages related to your injuries. Call the Miami personal injury attorneys at Payer Law today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how we can help.


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