Putnam woman says Frontier caused her injuries

By Lawrence Smith | Apr 27, 2012

WINFIELD – A Putnam County woman alleges following the advice given by her cable company to disconnect her Internet service led to a trip to the hospital.

Frontier Communications is named in a personal injury suit filed by Callie Mae Sanson. In her complaint filed April 12 in Putnam Circuit Court, Sanson alleges instructions provided by a Frontier representative on pulling the plug on her high-speed Internet led to a fall and broken bones.

According to her suit, Sanson called Frontier on June 6 and asked that her Internet service be disconnected. The unidentified representative Sanson spoke with said while Frontier would not be able to disconnect the Internet service, she "could easily perform the task herself."

Becuase Frontier installed it, Sanson, again, asked the representative to have someone disconnect her Internet service. Again, the representative said "she could easily disconnect the service at the attachment which would be located on the utility pole adjacent to [her] property."

Sanson's location is not specified in the suit.

According to the suit, one of Sanson's friends, Laura France, who was present during the conversation, got on the phone with the representative, and said the task may be difficult because Sanson is 70 years old.

Undaunted, the representative told France that Frontier "could not perform the service as requested and if she [Sanson] wanted it done on that day to do it herself."

Sometime thereafter, Sanson, as instructed by the Frontier representative, went outside to the utility pole near her residence to attempt to disconnect her home from the Internet. In the course of looking for the service box, she slipped over the nearby embankment.

According to her suit, Sanson remained over the embankment for over an hour calling for help. When nobody answered her pleas, she made it back up the embankment and to her home under her own power.

The next day, Sanson checked herself into the emergency room at Thomas Memorial Hospital in South Charleston. Not only did she suffer broken ribs but also "contusions about her right shoulder and severe headaches requiring prescription medication."

Prior to her visit to the ER both France and Sanson's son, Greg Petry, called Frontier to inform them what happened to Sanson. A representative who came to Sanson's home a few days later to disconnect her Internet service said not only did the other representative misinform her the connect was on the utility pole, but also it isn't company policy for customers to disconnect the cable themselves.

As a result of her injuries, Sanson says she finds it difficult to wear clothes, including a bra, and continues to take medication including two Lortabs, and four Alleve a day to relieve her pain. Also, she maintains she's been confined to a wheelchair during the last 10 months which has caused her to "engage the services of her granddaughter and others at great inconvenience and expense to her and her family."

Sanson seeks unspecified damages. She is represented by Sissonville attorney Walton S. Shepherd III. The case is assigned to Senior Status Judge James O. Holliday.

Putnam Circuit Court, case number 12-C-114

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