Judge Upholds $20M Massachusetts Products Liability Lawsuit in Woman’s Pool Slide Death

A judge has upheld the $20M Andover wrongful death verdict awarded to the family of a woman who died after she was injured while going down an inflatable pool slide. Robin Aleo, 29, sustained fatal injuries when the slide partially collapsed as she descended head first and she struck her head on the pool deck.

After the Andover swimming pool accident, Aleo, who suffered a spinal cord injury and broke her neck, became a quadriplegic that couldn’t breath without help. She was later removed from life support.

Her family filed an Essex County, Massachusetts products liability complaint against Toys “R” Us, which imported the Banzai Falls in-ground slide that was made in China. They contended that the slide was never tested to see if it fulfilled federal standards.

Safety standards dictate that pool slides have to be able to safely carry up to 350 pounds without deforming or collapsing. Attorneys for the defense contended that because the slide was inflatable, it isn’t subject to the testing that is generally required for other pool slides.

Last year, a jury awarded the family $20.6M in Andover wrongful death damages. Toys “R” Us filed a motion asking that the verdict be lowered and a new trial take place. A Superior Court judge denied both requests.

While no money can make up for the death of a loved one, it can provide family members with some financial relief while allowing them to hold any responsible parties liable for wrongdoing. Product manufacturers, sellers, distributors, and importers must make sure that the consumer goods that they sell meet all safety standards so that the chance of serious injury or death is decreased. Even if the party didn’t manufacture the product but played a role in the chain of distribution that allowed consumer goods to enter the market, that person or entity could be ordered to pay damages.

$20 million verdict upheld in pool slide lawsuit, Boston, February 17, 2012
$20M Verdict Upheld in Massachusetts Pool Slide Lawsuit, Insurance Journal, February 20, 2012

More Blog Posts:
Massachusetts Products Liability: $20.6M Andover Wrongful Death Verdict Awarded Against Toys “R’ Us in Fatal Swimming Pool Slide Accident, Boston Injury Lawyer Blog, October 15, 2011

“Metal-on-Metal” Hip Replacement Devices May Increase Cancer Risk, Says Study, Boston Injury Lawyer Blog, February 13, 2012

Johnson & Johnson Sued in Wrongful Death of Toddler Who Took Children’s Tylenol, Boston Injury Lawyer Blog, January 11, 2012
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