Forklift driver sues Lowe's over unreasonably dangerous load of shrink wrap

Michelle Massey, East Texas Bureau Aug. 19, 2009, 8:29am

MARSHALL -- While working in the Lowe's warehouse, Sabrina Powell claims the forklift she was driving bumped into a broken pallet causing the shrink-wrap the forklift was carrying to fall and hit her in the head.

Sabrina and James Powell filed a personal injury lawsuit against Lowe's Companies Inc and Lowe's Home Centers Inc. on Aug. 18 in the Marshall Division of the Eastern District of Texas.

According to the complaint, Sabrina Powell was operating a reach truck in the warehouse when a piece of wood from a broken pallet struck a roll of shrink-wrap that was being carried on the roof of her reach truck. The shrink-wrap fell hitting Powell on the forehead.

She claims her injuries are the result of an unsafe condition caused by the broken pallet, and the "defective method" used to transport shrink-wrap on the roof of the forklift.

Alleging negligence, the plaintiff states that the defendant failed to provide a safe area for employees to perform their job duties, failed to warn of the dangerous condition and failed to properly safe guard individuals from the dangerous condition.

Powell argues Lowe's has failed to properly maintain the reach truck to safely transport the shrink-wrap, and failed to maintain safe pallets.

"Plaintiff would show the method of transporting the shrink wrap, and the defective condition of the pallet made it obvious to Defendants that it was only a matter of time before someone would be seriously injured as a result of the unreasonable condition created by Defendants," the complaint states.

The plaintiffs are seeking damages for physical pain, mental anguish, medical expenses, physical impairment, lost earnings, and loss of household services, loss of consortium and pre and post-judgment interest.

Longview attorney Marc C. Mayfield and Frank Weedon of the law firm of Mayfield Weedon LLP and attorney W. Joel Smith are representing the plaintiffs.

Jury trial requested.

U.S. District Judge T. John Ward will preside over the litigation.

Case No 2:09cv00248

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