News & Articles

Swinging Plaintiff Can't Prove Negligence

swingA Sullivan County jury was called on to decide the negligence of a hunting club for the collapse of a porch swing.

The case involved a cabin located near Laporte. The cabin was well maintained by the members and used by their families for summer events. At one such event, the wife of one of the members was swinging on a porch swing, when the chain snapped. She broke her ankle.

Interestingly, the two members of plaintiff's family who belonged to the club, were painters and had been primarily for the swing maintenance. They went so far as to paint the chain of the swing. At trial, they testified that the chain seemed to have no significant rust or deterioration. They claimed to have told others that the chain should have been replaced because it was "old."

The club members countered that no such complaints had ever occurred, and if their had been concerns, the plaintiff's family was in as good a position as anyone to buy a new chain. The swing had been used without problem for several years.

The jury found no negligence.

Gary Weber defended the hunting club.