Woman sues airline after hot tea slides off tray table and lands in lap

By David Yates | Aug 4, 2015

A recent federal lawsuit is holding an airline responsible for a passenger’s burns after a cup of hot tea slip off her tray table and landed in her lap.

Texas resident Helen Yun filed suit against Korean Airlines on July 30 in the U.S. District Court for Eastern Texas, Dallas Division.

According to the lawsuit, on Aug. 3, 2014, Yun boarded a flight from New York to Seoul Inchon.

“Through no fault of her own the Plaintiff was severely burned when a cup of hot tea slid off the tray table in front of her into her lap,” the suit states.

“Her injuries include, bodily injury of second and third degree burns to her right and left thighs, resulting pain and suffering, disability, mental anguish, loss of capacity for the enjoyment of life, medical treatment, other damages, loss of income and medical expenses.”

The lawsuit fails to describe a specific act of negligence other than Korean Airlines is liable for Yun’s injuries under articles 17 and 21 of the Montreal Convention -- a multilateral treaty that deals partly with compensation for the victims of air disasters.

“Defendant Korean Air was at all relevant times a common carrier and owed Plaintiff the highest degree of care,” the suit asserts. “Defendant Korean Air breached its duties to Plaintiff and is strictly liable to Plaintiff for her full measure of damages.”

Yun is represented by Ladd Sanger, attorney for the Dallas law firm Slack & Davis.

Case No. 3:15-cv-02516

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