Visitor Question

Raised island pumps with protruding ends not marked with visible barrier?

Submitted By: Anonymous (California)

At each of the gas stations I visit, there are usually tall metal barriers or something to identify from the driver’s side of the car the area where the raised curb of the gas pumps is located. However NOT at this Mobil station where I damaged my car. Not only is this area not marked, but the cement is protruding outward, even further than where it is near the pump.

Do I have a valid case against the gas station’s insurance company for damage to my vehicle from this foreseeable hazard? How would I go about pursuing a case for this? Thank you for any information you can give.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.

Answer

Dear Anonymous,

You are referring to the legal principle of Foreseeable Risk. A Foreseeable Risk is a likelihood of personal injury or property damage that a reasonable person should be able to anticipate or expect in a given set of circumstances.

Foreseeable risk is often cited by defendants in property damage and personal injury lawsuits as an affirmative defense. It is a claim by a defendant that the plaintiff knew, or should have known a risk of property damage or personal injury existed, and with that knowledge, assumed the risk. When that occurs, the plaintiff may not be entitled to compensation for his or her damages.

To have the basis of a property damage claim against Mobil will require you to show evidence that the Mobil Corporation was in violation of building codes set out for the construction of gas stations. To do that will require you contact the California

Building

Standards Commission.

The California Building Standards Code is the section of California law governing the building of commercial businesses.

Unfortunately, it is unlikely the Mobil Corporation or it’s franchisee violated the regulations set out in Title 24. Even if they did, it is unlikely they will agree to compensate you for your property damage. To do is would invite multiple claims by others who may sustain damage to their vehicles in a similar manner.

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

Best of luck,

Published: May 10, 2016

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