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Case Results

Spin bike pedal breaks during spinning class at local health club, crank arm shoves into client's leg. Spoliation of evidence. Medical bills over $30,000. Settlement $225,000.

Mrs. N was a very active 59-year-old woman who was taking a spinning (spin bike) class at a nearby health club. When she was told to do so by the class instructor, she stood up on the pedals to begin a “sprint”. As she put her weight down on the bike pedal, the pedal broke off the crank arm, causing her to fall. As she began to fall off the bike, the jagged metal of the crank arm shaft jammed into her right leg and sliced it open, causing a large, deep gash. Forty to fifty subcutaneous and skin stitches were required to close her wound. She went home with crutches and antibiotic medication. Even as her extreme pain improved, her leg remained sore.  Three weeks later, during her follow-up evaluation, when the wound dressing was removed, her wound was oozing and dripping down her leg. She was diagnosed with a wound infection, the wound was debrided, she was given a different antibiotic and sent home. However, the wound did not heal, and an infectious disease physician surgically debrided the wound while Mrs. N was under general anesthesia, and also removed skin from her upper leg and grafted it onto her wound. She was in a half-cast for two weeks, after which she was in physical therapy. She has not only a large, permanent scar, but also some weakness in her leg and is unable to be as physically active as she was before.

Spoliation of evidence: Immediately after her injury, the client notified the health club that she did not want it to destroy or change the bike or the part that had broken off. Although the health club allowed an investigator hired by us to enter the club and take pictures of the bike and its parts, and the insurance representative of the health club told us several times that the bike and its parts had been saved, the health club refused to accept responsibility for the incident. It blamed the manufacturer of the spin bike. After we filed the lawsuit against the health club, we were told that it did not have the broken piece, that it had been turned over to the manufacturer, and that the bike had been retrofitted and put back into service.

Our client’s total medical bills were in excess of $30,000. Once we found out that the health club had spoiled our ability to have access to the broken pedal and crank arm (called ‘spoliation’), we were able to settle the case for $225,000.

Awarded: Settlement $225,000

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Weiner, Spivey & Miller, PLC
10605 Judicial Drive
Suite B6
Fairfax, VA 22030
Phone: (703) 273-9500
Fax: (703) 273-9505
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