The family of Jeffrey Thompson is suing National Seating & Mobility Inc. for $10 million. They filed their Boston, Massachusetts wrongful death lawsuit alleging negligence in Suffolk Superior Court. Thompson, who is a quadriplegic, died after his wheelchair malfunctioned while it was being repaired in 3007. The 29-year-old broke his leg and went into “uncontrollable seizures.”
The plaintiffs contend that the repair technicians should have removed Thompson from the chair and taken out the device’s battery before beginning routine repairs on the electrical wiring. The chair malfunctioned and “jumped,” and the movement caused his legs to get pinned under a table.
The repairmen contacted Thomson’s personal care assistant, who told them to call 911. He was transported to a hospital and died the next day. The Boston wrongful death complaint contends that the technicians were inadequately trained.
According to Thompson’s father Charles, another technician that had come to do maintenance on the wheelchair had always removed his son from the $15,000 wheelchair before beginning to work.
Wheelchairs require regular maintenance to ensure full functionality. Axles, nuts, bolts, legrests, armrests, footrests, backrests, pivot points, ball bearings, the chair frame, and any electrical components need to be in proper working condition. Damaged parts should be replaced, certain parts should be properly lubricated, and any necessary repairs should be made. This is not a process that should cause injury to anyone.
Disability advocate’s family sues after he dies during repairs to his wheelchair, StarTribune, March 17, 2010
Activist’s family sues over wheelchair death, Boston.com/AP, March 18, 2010
Related Web Resource:
National Seating & Mobility Inc.
Wrongful Death, Nolo
If you believe that negligence, carelessness, or recklessness on another person’s part contributed to your loved one’s Massachusetts wrongful death, it is important that you explore your legal options immediately.