South Charleston woman blames rug at CAMC for fall, broken hip

CHARLESTON – A South Charleston woman has sued Charleston Area Medical Center after she tripped on a rug in the lobby of one of its buildings. Kimberly S. Williams filed the lawsuit Jan. 12 in Kanawha Circuit Court. On Jan. 13, 2004, Williams says she was entering the lobby of CAMC's Family Medicine Building at CAMC's General Hospital in Kanawha City for a doctor's appointment. "At or near the entrance to the lobby of the Family Medicine Building, there was a rug whose edge was not lying flat on the floor, as if it ad been heated in a dryer or exposed to some similar source of high heat," the suit states. Williams' "foot went under the ruffled edge of the rug, which she did not notice as she walked forward, so that when she attempted to take a step, she lost her balance and fell, and broke her left hip." The incident required surgery, followed by a lengthy recovery period, according to the suit, filed by attorney Jeffrey V. Mehalic. Then, on Aug. 14, 2004, Williams fell again. She says she "lost her balance due to instability resulting from her broken hip, and again fell, and re-injured her hip and fractured her left index finger, which required additional medical treatment and recovery." In addition to lost wages from being unable to work for a period of time, Williams also says she has humiliation, embarrassment and anguish. And she claims she will continue to suffer from those because of the permanent nature of the injuries. She also says she has suffered a reduction in her capacity to earn money and to enjoy life. She seeks compensatory damages including pre- and post-judgment interest as well as attorney fees, court costs and other relief. She requests a jury trial. The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge Jennifer Bailey Walker. Kanawha Circuit Court case number: 06-C-54

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