$5 Million Settlement for Paralysis from Exercise Equipment

$5 Million Settlement

T. v. The Fitness Experience

Our client, a 68-year-old man who regularly exercised and was thoroughly familiar with exercise equipment, had slipped from the rotating exercise table he used every day, crashing head-first to the floor. He was paralyzed from the shoulders down when his vertebrae shattered in the fall. He spent virtually every day in a wheelchair or in bed at a nursing home afterward. We brought suit against the company that made the equipment, the retailer, STL International, and the Fitness Experience, respectively.

Using expert analysis, we demonstrated that the machine (which was strapped on an A-frame and designed for people with bad backs who strap their ankles to lock them in place before getting on the machine) easily tipped users upside down. A person like our client would have his head only six to eight inches off the ground. When a pin that held the lock in place slipped out, he had no room or time to get his hands down to protect himself. As a result of our analysis, the defendants agreed to pay a $5 million settlement to our client that will help assure his long-term care.