What is the most dangerous thing about Sawgrass Mills? Is it the sheer size of the place, so big that you would have virtually no hope of being reunited with your party unless you had taken note of whether the entrance you had chosen as your rendezvous point was the green toad, the pink flamingo, or any of the other various entrances named after Florida wildlife? Is it the danger of being scammed into buying an apparently miraculous gadget that turns out to be useless? Is it the artery-clogging delicacies in the mall’s two food courts and numerous outlying restaurants? Is it the danger of getting in a fight with other customers vying for scarce products being sold at a deep discount? Virtually every South Florida resident has a story about a mishap that happened at Sawgrass Mills. One could argue that the outsized mall is an accident waiting to happen, but if you can reasonably argue that Sawgrass Mills could have prevented the accident, you might have grounds for a premises liability lawsuit.
Details of Breania White’s Lawsuit
In the summer of 2017, heavy rains caused widespread flooding throughout South Florida, including Sunrise, where the enormous Sawgrass Mills mall is located. Some of the mall’s entrances were closed, and the areas adjacent to them were marked with orange cones, but other areas of the parking lot. Breania White was attempting to park her Ford Fiesta at the Home Depot on the southeast side of the mall complex. She turned left into what she thought was a row of flooded parking spaces, but it turned out to be a ditch that had filled with water. Her car started sinking, and she had to fight her way out. After the incident, she started suffering pain in her neck, as well as respiratory symptoms. Two days later, she went to the emergency room, where her respiratory symptoms were attributed to pneumonia and her neck pain was diagnosed as a pinched nerve in her neck.
White filed a premises liability lawsuit against Sawgrass Mills, requesting compensatory damages for her medical expenses and for repairs to her car. She alleges that, if Sawgrass Mills had posted signs to alert visitors to the location of the ditch, whether permanent signs or temporary ones that were just placed during the flood, she could have avoided the accident that resulted in her injuries. Likewise, blocking the Home Depot parking lot with cones could have prevented the accident. The defendant in the lawsuit is Simon Property Group, which owns Sawgrass Mills and many other malls in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Japan, South Korea, and Malaysia.
Let Us Help you Today
Places of business have a responsibility to make their properties safe during adverse weather conditions or else prevent customers from entering until the premises can be made safe again. Contact Palm Beach County premises liability attorneys at Smith, Ball & Báez Injury Lawyers for a consultation.