Man sues after scaffold collapses while repairing beach house

John Suayan, Galveston Bureau Aug. 6, 2011, 10:34am

GALVESTON - John Boleyn has filed a $50,000 lawsuit against Sunbelt Rentals Inc., complaining about a defective scaffold.

Court papers filed July 25 in Galveston County Court at Law No. 1 allege said scaffold fell from under Boleyn and his nephew on Oct. 23, 2009 when they were performing post-Hurricane Ike repairs on the plaintiff's beach house on the Bolivar Peninsula.

The nephew, whose name and age is not mentioned, is not a plaintiff in the case.

The original petition shows the complainant rented the scaffolding for a paid month-long period.

He recalls he and his nephew replacing insulation and installing siding on the home at the time of the alleged incident.

"The plaintiff and his nephew were standing on the scaffolding conducting their work when the scaffolding suddenly collapsed from underneath them," the suit says.

"They were both injured and transported to the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston for treatment."

Boleyn claims he sustained a badly fractured ankle as a result of the fall of over 10 feet to the ground, subsequently contacting the defendant's Port Arthur branch to place it on notice of the collapse in question.

"At that time, Mr. Boleyn indicated a dissatisfaction with the scaffolding and his asserted concerns with its use," the suit says.

"Sunbelt closed out the rental contract."

An inspection conducted three months later revealed that the respondent gave the wrong type of scaffolding for the soil condition on Boleyn's property.

The suit insists "the defendant owed a duty to use ordinary care, including the duty to protect and safeguard the plaintiff from unreasonably dangerous conditions or to warn of their existence."

Attorney Gregory W. Allen of Houston is representing Boleyn, and Galveston County Court at Law No. 1 Judge John Grady is presiding over the case.

Cause No. 65,701

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