Man claims Home Depot aware of dangerous overhead display

John Suayan, Galveston Bureau Feb. 9, 2010, 3:40am

GALVESTON - A Galveston County man claims he can no longer use his left hand as a result of an incident at a nationwide home improvement retailer.

Willie E. Williams filed a lawsuit on Feb. 5 in Galveston County District Court against The Home Depot U.S.A. Inc. after he was injured by a falling overhead display.

On Aug. 20, 2009, Williams was at the Home Depot in League City when he claims a residential door used as an overhead display fell on him, inflicting extensive damage to his left hand. He alleges the store failed to properly secure the door and failed to warn of the dangerous condition.

"The acts of Home Depot were improved with the knowledge of a sophisticated business that has significant economic power to remedy, warn, or eliminate dangerous conditions," the original petition says.

Williams, who was self-employed and had a concrete restoration company, explains that he was walking down an aisle with an employee of the defendant when the door fell and "violently struck" him.

"In an effort to protect himself and mitigate the impact of the door striking him, Mr. Williams attempted to shield himself with his left arm," the suit states.

"When the door crashed upon Mr. Williams, it severely lacerated his hand causing extensive bone, ligament and muscle damage."

The plaintiff says that his right hand and back also sustained injury. He has had surgery to his left hand in an attempt to piece the bones back together.

His treating physician surmises the plaintiff will never regain any significant use of his left hand, according to the suit.

"Since the incident, Mr. Williams has not been able to return to work and in all likelihood will not be able to because of the impairment to his hand," it says.

Consequently, Williams seeks damages for what the suit labels as "serious physical, financial, and emotional injuries."

Houston attorneys Mark O. Midani and Tobias A. Cole are representing the plaintiff.

The case has been assigned to Galveston County 10th District Court Judge David Garner.

Case No. 10cv0388

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