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Fang v. United States

140 F.3d 1238 (1998)

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Fang v. United States

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

140 F.3d 1238 (1998)

Facts

Freda Fang (Freda) was riding in a car through a national park when the car’s brakes failed. The car plunged down the side of a mountain. Freda was ejected from the car during the accident. Emergency medical technicians (EMTs) employed by the National Park Service at the ranger station closest to the site responded to the accident scene. After the arrival of additional medical support and equipment, the EMTs placed Fang in a cervical collar and transported her up the mountain on a backboard, continuously administering cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Freda was pronounced dead at the top of the mountain. The cause of death was cervical fracture. Pearl Fang (plaintiff), Freda’s mother, brought a wrongful-death action against the United States (defendant), alleging that the National Park Service negligently failed to properly stabilize Freda’s spine, administer appropriate CPR, and carry the necessary equipment to the accident site. The district court granted the United States’ motion for summary judgment, ruling that Fang’s claims were barred by the discretionary-function exception to the Federal Tort Claims Act’s waiver of immunity. Fang appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Nelson, J.)

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