Triathlete blames sponsor for foot injury

By Cara Bailey | Apr 30, 2007

MORGANTOWN - A Monongalia County woman says a triathlon sponsor is responsible for her foot being cut while getting in the water for the swimming portion of the race.

Abby Meadema Steketee filed a suit April 13 in Monongalia Circuit Court against The Great Morgantown Convention and Visitors Bureau Inc. and Health and Fitness Promotions Inc.

Health and Fitness Promotions sponsored a triathlon competition on June 25, 2005, which Steketee entered.

The swimming portion was in the Monongahela River, which Steketee claims is contaminated.

"The degree of contamination in the river at the time of the triathlon rendered the water unreasonably safe for swimmers," the suit says.

According to the suit, swimmers had to enter the river by walking down a boat ramp, part of which was covered in water.

Steketee claims that when she entered the water, she stepped on a sharp object and severely cut her foot, by her third, fourth and fifth toes.

According to the suit, no first aid or emergency transportation was provided.

Steketee was transported to Ruby Memorial Hospital. According to the suit, she developed a severe foot infections because of the contamination in the river.

Steketee claims the triathlon sponsors owed the participants prompt and adequate medical care. The suit also says the participants were not warned of the dangerous contamination of the Monongahela River.

Steketee seeks compensatory and punitive damages for her injuries.

Robert Miller II is representing Steketee.

Monongalia Circuit Court case number 07-C-260

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