Injured by metal under a security sensor on glass sculpture...

by Marianne
(Moorestown, NJ, USA)

I purchased a glass sculpture from a major department store. At home I used warm water to remove the price and other stickers from the sculpture. A hard plastic sticker about an inch by half-inch was very difficult to remove, so I used my thumb nail to pry it off.

After it was off there still remained what looked like a piece of silver foil still stuck to the glass. I push hard against the corner of it with my thumbnail and it sliced from under my nail to about 3/4 of an inch down my thumb. It felt like I was cut by a tin can! I spewed blood.

When I touched the corner that had pried up, I discovered that it was a strip of very sharp metal!!! My thumb bled most of the day and was really sore, so I returned to the store to tell the manager what happened, that I was hurt and that those tags need a warning about the metal inside for the person who has to remove them.

I went to urgent care for a sore throat and inquired about my thumb while I was there. I was told to get a tetanus shot and watch it for infection. Since I got antibiotics for the throat, I imagine the thumb will be protected.

The manger said that I would be hearing from their insurance company. What do I tell them that will be useful in getting a warning on those sensors, or a way to get them off without hurting yourself? Should I ask for any damages? Thank you for this service.

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "Injured by metal under a security sensor on glass sculpture...":

Marianne (Moorestown, NJ, USA):

Fortunately you weren't hurt more seriously. Because you didn't sustain medical bills more than an amount for the tetanus shot, nor require additional medical treatment specifically for the injury to your thumb, you really don’t have the basis of a personal injury claim against the store, or against the manufacturer.

Your altruistic decision to notify the store and manufacturer about the danger of the metal strip is commendable. Maybe doing so will help protect other purchasers of the glass structure.

If the insurance company calls you, you have a right to be reimbursed for at least the tetanus shot, your out-of-pocket expenses (for medications, bandages, and costs of travel to and from the doctor), and lost wages if you had to miss work because of traveling to and from the doctor.

You might also ask for an additional amount for your pain and suffering, but since it's such a minor injury, you likely won't get much out of the insurance company.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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TYPE OF ACCIDENT
AUTO ACCIDENT
PERSONAL INJURY
WORKERS COMPENSATION
MEDICAL ERROR
YES! I WANT FAIR COMPENSATION