CHARLESTON – A Kanawha County woman is suing the Kroger Co. after she was injured at its Belle store.

On April 11, 2011, Alice Tyree entered the Kroger store in Belle in her wheelchair, according to a complaint filed Nov. 1 in Kanawha Circuit Court.

Tyree claims as she was maneuvering the mechanized wheelchair to enter the main part of the store, the doors in the foyer opened automatically and struck the vending machines that had been placed next to the door in the foyer.

The vending machines then struck the mechanized wheelchair, which caused Tyree to suffer a separation of her shoulder, according to the suit.

Tyree claims the defendant owed a duty of care to invitees, including maintenance of the premises in a manner that does not create a risk of injury to customers.

Kroger breached its duty of care by situating the vending machines in a location that caused them to be struck by the opening of the automatic doors in the store’s foyer, according to the suit, and the defendant had previously been expressly warned by the manufacturer of the doors that material and equipment should not be situated close to the doors.

Tyree claims as a result of the defendant’s reckless and wanton breach of duty, she suffered a serious and permanent injury.

After a manager for Kroger had been alerted to the injury to Tyree, the manager informed her that Kroger would pay any and all resulting medical expenses, according to the suit, and Tyree subsequently sought treatment for her injuries.

Tyree claims Kroger has refused to pay for the costs of treatment, which is a breach of Kroger’s promise to her.

The defendant’s breach of promise has caused Tyree to be turned over to collections agencies with the medical service providers because she is disabled and indigent and unable to pay for the costs of treatment, according to the suit.

Tyree is seeking compensatory damages. She is being represented by Dana F. Eddy.

The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge James C. Stucky.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number: 12-C-2203

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